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Pleasure & Pain

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Album Review

What's more surprising? That Pleasure and Pain, One Twelve's fifth album, is not a greatest-hits compilation named after a song off their 1996 debut, or that it comes with a parental advisory label? In nearly a decade of existence, the group has amassed enough charting singles to warrant a concise best-of, and not many artists coming up with them during the mid-'90s are still active. In the wake of parting with P. Diddy and Bad Boy, they've taken the opportunity to work with a mostly new pool of collaborators, including Mario Winans, Jermaine Dupri, and Bryan-Michael Cox, who each pitch in once or twice. They remain self-sufficient otherwise, with member Daron Jones handling a good portion of the production duties. The result isn't much different from the previous albums, with a few standout singles and album tracks surrounded by a generous amount of forgettable moments, and a similar ratio of upbeat numbers and ballads to match. The parental advisory label (a first for the once squeaky-clean group) can actually be pinned on previously unlikely collaborators Three 6 Mafia. (Who could've ever predicted that a line as forthright as "Is she gonna chew me up or she gon' swallow up my nads" would ever appear in one of their songs? Nobody.)


Formed: Atlanta, GA

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Equally rooted in gospel, soul, and hip-hop, 112 were the first and most successful urban vocal group to emerge from Sean "Puffy" Combs' Bad Boy Records roster. Not only was the group's eponymous 1996 debut popular, but the group could be heard on records by such Bad Boy artists as Mase and the Notorious B.I.G. Unlike most artists on Bad Boy, 112's image was clean, pure, and wholesome (initially, at least), which helped the group cross over to a more mainstream audience. The four members of 112 --...
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Pleasure & Pain, 112
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