Jason Derulo, "Jason Derulo"


Jason Derulo's self-titled debut finds the 20-year-old singer/songwriter/dancer crooning about what most young adults at his age ponder: love, flings and other fantasies. Having already achieved acclaim for penning songs for rappers Pitbull and Birdman, Derulo's solo career took a new direction last November when his single "Whatcha Say" topped the Billboard Hot 100. But the nine-song album's softer ballads--like the piano-driven "What If"--distract from Derulo's powerhouse vocals. His talent is somewhat misused on the tune, blanketed beneath equal parts Auto-Tune and lyrical vagueness. However, the inclusion of club bangers like "The Sky's the Limit" and "Love Hangover" boost the set's energy. The latter track's synth-driven pulse, combined with Derulo's energetic falsetto on the narrative chorus ("And all I remember is me saying, 'Give it to me'/Then you came in"), provide a dancefloor excursion.--Melanie Bertoldi