New Jack City is a fast and furious movie, but the soundtrack disc is slow and predictable. The music adequately conveys the film’s themes — the frustrated expectations of youth, the search for easy money in the drug trade, and other dismal realities of street life — but they’re muted by the seamless, overproduced black pop that dominates the collection and smooths over the message’s rough edges. The rap cuts come a little closer to raising our blood pressure, but not much. Even Ice-T, who convincingly crawls into the mind of a ”New Jack Hustler” on the song of that name, was more chilling with similar material on the soundtrack of ”Colors.” The good news is Guy, who get playfully loose and funky on the title track; if only the rest of the album had matched their example. C+
Genre: Soundtracks; Lead Performer: Various Artists; Producer (group): Giant, Warner Bros.
Posted May 3 1991 — 12:00 AM EDT
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