Picks and Pans Review: Revelation
In a field dominated by the Backstreet Boys and 'N Sync, that other boy band, 98°, has staked its claim by offering something a little different. With their richer four-part harmonies, such pop confections as 1998's "Because of You" and last year's "I Do (Cherish You)" are crisper lyrically and stronger musically than the competition's. They even write some of their own songs.
But on this, the fourth album from the Ohio-based quartet—once marketed as the new Boyz II Men—they seem to have lost some ground. It's painfully obvious on the disc's first single, the Latin-tinged "Give Me Just One Night (Una Noche)"—in which the only words they actually sing in Spanish are "una noche"—that they're trying to cash in on current trends. Better to leave the Ricky Martin impressions to Ricky. The racy (by boy-band standards) "Stay the Night" demonstrates that the boys have grown older and bolder, though the track still amounts to so much ear candy. Somewhat more successful—though still below the group's best work—are soaring ballads like "Yesterday's Letter." And on the a cappella "Interlude 1" we find at last what Revelation is most lacking: 98°'s patented, unadorned harmonies.
Bottom Line: Tepid