Donell Jones

Journey of a Gemini

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Following a protracted bout with label issues and some time spent cleaning up his lifestyle, Donell Jones finally released his fourth album -- four full years after his most successful album, Life Goes On, which fell only two spots short of reaching the very top of the Billboard album chart. While Journey of a Gemini doesn't quite maintain the steady level of consistency that his first three albums carried, it's nonetheless a satisfying addition to his catalog. Known to produce most of his own material, Jones takes a surprising direction by handing the duties over to the likes of Tim & Bob (who, unsurprisingly, shine the brightest), the Underdogs, Mike City, and Ryan Leslie for a significant chunk of the album. Since the album's not as ballad-heavy, Jones is less prone to oversinging, and several excellent midtempo tracks -- "Better Start Talking," "I'm Gonna Be," "Spend the Night," "Feelin' You," "Lust or Love" -- should function equally well in clubs and living rooms. Just to show that he hasn't turned into a total square, there are plenty of nasty bedroom come-ons.

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