Picks and Pans Review: Almost Famous

UPDATED 08/11/2003 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 08/11/2003 at 01:00 AM EDT

Lumidee (Straightface/Universal)

"I got the whole world singing off-key," says Lumidee before launching into "Never Leave You (Uh Oooh, Uh Oooh)," her pitch-imperfect hit that has given tone-deaf people everywhere a reason to roar. The reggae-based jam, which uses the handclap-like diwali rhythm popularized on Sean Paul's recent No. 1 smash "Get Busy," features a singsong hook ("Uh oooh, uh oooh") that will indeed never leave you once it gets stuck in your head. Unfortunately there is nothing else on Lumidee's debut CD that is nearly as catchy as her first single; the rest is almost filler.

The 19-year-old Spanish Harlem native (full name: Lumidee CedeƱo), who comes off as an amateurish cross between J.Lo and Ashanti, fills this disc with hip-hop soul tracks in the vein of "Never Leave You," but the repetitious beats and rudimentary vocals quickly wear thin. Things don't get any better when Lumidee raps on the Latin-flavored "Go with Me." Let's just say it won't make Lil' Kim jealous.

BOTTOM LINE: Get the single, leave the album behind

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