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Usher, Beyoncé, and Lil Wayne want to make love in this club

Usher’s “Love in this Club” is easily one of the year’s best pop or R&B singles to date. After weeks of constant TV/radio rotation, I still can’t stop humming that pre-chorus hook (and no, I don’t care whether or not producer Polow Da Don got those loops straight from GarageBand). But when one realizes, as Usher does, that one “want{s} to make love in this club,” the real question is: With whom? That first version includes a decent guest verse from Young Jeezy; a semi-official remix added a welcome cameo from T.I., who put his slick “My Love” flow to good use yet again. But this week, Ush hit us with a special slow-jam sequel. “Love in This Club Part II” (below; some NSFW language) attempts to one-up its predecessors with all-new vocals from Beyoncé and Lil Wayne. And?

Well, Idolator’s already comparing it to R. Kelly’s untouchably classic “Ignition Remix,” which is just silly. If you ask me, the slower tempo does no favors to “Love in This Club,” which was already a bit serious and gooey-sounding for a song about public sex. Now that it’s become a straight-up quiet storm joint, Usher’s can’t-wait come-ons sound even more ridiculous and creepy. (“Don’t be shy, go on, let your boy get in,” he croons, “So you can tell all of your friends you was on the remix.”) As for Wayne, well, he’s Wayne. For every moment of awe-inspiring lyrical genius he’s capable of, he seems to turn out a bonus burst of phoned-in drivel like this. He recycles lines and cadences from his own “Lollipop” and his popular remix of Mario’s “Crying Out for Me”; all that’s new is a particularly raspy vocal tone. The only real strong point in the whole song is Beyoncé, who’s in great voice. It’s nice to hear her on some new music, but what’s she doing wasting her time on this subpar mess?

Then again, that’s just my take; anyone out there like “Part II” as much as Usher’s first try?

Originally posted April 25 2008 — 6:35 PM EDT

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