Marisa Fox
March 15, 1991 AT 05:00 AM EST

Spillin' the Beans

type
Music
Current Status
In Season
performer
Jellybean Benitez
genre
Pop

We gave it a C+

It’s music made for designer-jeans commercials, full of up-tempo beats, squeaky vocals, sappy pop hooks, and pat production. But this is no quickie jingle. Spillin’ the Beans is the third full-length solo project by deejay-turned-producer-songwriter-singer (and, in a brief and inconsequential song, even a rapper) John ”Jellybean” Benitez. He may not be the only locally famous New York club deejay now fronting his own recording act, but he’s the most visible. After all, he’s greatly publicized his mid-’80s liaison with Madonna; his is one of many trendy faces who have lately graced ads for the Gap; and Atlantic Records has dumped a small fortune on his debut on their label. But his flimsy dance tracks are proof that pomp can only go so far. Most of the LP sounds like reject Madonna material; he even took one of her backup singers, Niki Haris, who’s featured here along with other bland vocal debutantes. Perhaps Jellybean uses unimpressive singers so as not to upstage his own lame singing. And his production work is wimpy too. If you must, buy the CD version for two bonus remixes by famed house deejay Tony Humphries that manage to salvage this bag of punchless tracks. C+

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