Picks and Pans Review: Sing When You're Winning

updated 11/06/2000 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 11/06/2000 AT 01:00 AM EST

Robbie Williams (Capitol)

Album of the week

England's pop star of the moment hasn't made big waves on American shores. But in Europe 25-year-old Williams is all the rage. After getting dropped for bad behavior from the British boy band Take That in 1995, he reinvented himself as a multi-faceted pop crooner with last year's The Ego Has Landed. Suddenly his rough, regular-bloke attitude became his saving grace. And his wry lyrics made him all the more endearing. Once again, on Sing, he cribs without apology from Elton John, George Michael, Hall & Oates and the Beatles. But as blatant rip-offs go, this album is pretty appealing—and danceable too. "Let Love Be Your Energy," the bubbly opening track, floats along on its throbbing beat and a sassy bass line. The high-energy "Rock DJ" finds Williams an unconvincing rapper but an entertaining party host.

Bottom Line: Brit pop prankster scores big

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