Picks and Pans Review: Brandy

updated 12/22/2008 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 12/22/2008 AT 01:00 AM EST

Human

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R&B-POP
After releasing her best disc ever, 2004's underappreciated Afrodisiac, Brandy's music career and personal life hit the skids: She became a judge on America's Got Talent and triggered a fatal car accident two years ago. It's good to have her back on the pop scene—and off the has-been trail—with her fifth studio album. The former golden girl of Moesha deals with her tarnished image by revealing just how human she is. On "Camouflage" she refuses to hide her flaws from a lover, while on the title cut, the emotional highlight, she pleads, "Save me from myself." Another ballad, "Torn Down," sounds less about the unbreakable strength of a relationship and more about Brandy being a real survivor.

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