16 Songs, 1 Hour 3 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Following her impressive run on American Idol and her stunning performance in Dreamgirls, Jennifer’s Hudson’s debut album as a soloist is the final test to prove to the public that she is the real deal. Jennifer Hudson passes with flying colors. Music biz newcomers are often awkwardly assigned to trendy, disposable tracks, but Hudson’s debut is overseen by master hitmakers like Ne-Yo, T-Pain, and Polow Da Don, and her album displays a surprisingly high-quality and wide-ranging array of musical backgrounds. Hudson sounds wholly at home on bouncing club songs (“Spotlight”), soaring ballads (“If This Isn’t Love”), and hip-hop (“My Heart”). These producers could have easily saved these tracks for their personal projects, but it’s not hard to see why they wanted to work with Hudson. Her voice invigorates songs like “We Gon’ Fight” with the same guts and determination that won her the Oscar. Timbaland is used to making his protégés sound better, but his brilliant track for “Pocketbook” actually feeds on Hudson’s irrepressible energy instead of the other way around.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Following her impressive run on American Idol and her stunning performance in Dreamgirls, Jennifer’s Hudson’s debut album as a soloist is the final test to prove to the public that she is the real deal. Jennifer Hudson passes with flying colors. Music biz newcomers are often awkwardly assigned to trendy, disposable tracks, but Hudson’s debut is overseen by master hitmakers like Ne-Yo, T-Pain, and Polow Da Don, and her album displays a surprisingly high-quality and wide-ranging array of musical backgrounds. Hudson sounds wholly at home on bouncing club songs (“Spotlight”), soaring ballads (“If This Isn’t Love”), and hip-hop (“My Heart”). These producers could have easily saved these tracks for their personal projects, but it’s not hard to see why they wanted to work with Hudson. Her voice invigorates songs like “We Gon’ Fight” with the same guts and determination that won her the Oscar. Timbaland is used to making his protégés sound better, but his brilliant track for “Pocketbook” actually feeds on Hudson’s irrepressible energy instead of the other way around.

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