Off the Hook

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Xscape's follow-up to their hit debut Hummn' Comin' at 'Cha is an improvement on their first record, demonstrating gains both in terms of music and lyrics. Before, Xscape were part of the large brigade of sexually-obsessed R&B groups, selling a number of copies of their carnal single, "Just Kickin' It." While they are still sexual on their second album, Off the Hook, it doesn't overwhelm the music as it did on their debut. Recording with producers Dupri, Daryl Simmons, and Organized Noize on various tracks, the group has developed into impressive musicians, with a thorough grasp of slow, seductive soul and slick funk. Off the Hook may run a little long -- the 12 songs clock in at well over an hour -- but the record proves that Xscape has staying power.

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