That's My Jam

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New Kids on the Block – The Block (Deluxe Edition) [Reviews]

Posted by j.ly on June 2, 2010


After being out of the musical spotlight for 14 years (save Jordan Knight and Joey McIntyre’s notable solo efforts), New Kids on the Block had a lot to prove with their reunion album, The Block. Would their sound be reminiscent of the pop from their glory days or would the boy band — now composed of grown men — create cheesy interpretations of today’s music?

The response is “Click, Click, Click,” the set-opener and song that reportedly initiated the regrouping. The smooth, R&B-flavored track is defined by its hand clap-driven melody, and the raspy-voiced delivery and hollow beat craft a hypnotic vibe as the boys repeatedly ask their girls to “pose for me.” Also following the camera theme is “Lights, Camera, Action,” an energetic groove that borrows every film and TV cliché one can reference.

Guest stars abound on The Block, most notably Ne-Yo, who duets with NKOTB on one of our favorites, “Single.” Fellow Bostonians and predecessors New Edition make an appearance on “Full Service,” a bassy, fluid cut filled to the brim with vocoder vocals. Lady GaGa’s contribution comes in the form of “Big Girl Now,” which features a playful back-and-forth over an electronica-infused R&B melody.

“Grown Man” features purring chants and screeching howls from the Pussycat Dolls, while the club-seducing “Put It on My Tab” is a laid-back duet with Akon. Hip-hop club bangers “Sexify My Love,” “Looking Like Danger” and “Twisted” keep the party going, while ballads such as “2 In the Morning,” “Don’t Cry” and “Officially Over” are perfect for the after-party.

The Block’s only weakness is NKOTB’s reminder that the group is now composed of grown-ups, a theme that’s consistent through many of this solid set’s track list. Despite this, the album is an entertaining journey that’s nostalgia-inducing and forward thinking.

That’s My Jam’s Rating:
5. Get It Now
4. Get It On Sale
3. Get It As a Gift
2. Get It To a CD Exchange Store
1. Don’t Get It At All

Track List:
1. “Click, Click, Click”
2. “Single” feat. Ne-Yo
3. “Big Girl Now” feat. Lady GaGa
4. “Summertime”
5. “2 In the Morning”
6. “Grown Man” feat. Pussycat Dolls & Teddy Riley
7. “Dirty Dancing”
8. “Sexify My Love”
9. “Twisted”
10. “Full Service” feat. New Edition
11. “Lights, Camera, Action”
12. “Put It on My Tab” feat. Akon
13. “Stare at You”
14. “One Song”
15. “Don’t Cry”
16. “Officially Over”
17. “Looking Like Danger”

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