Men at Large

One Size Fits All

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This second offering from Jason Champion and Dave Tolliver, known collectively as Men at Large, should have benefited from the momentum built by their self-titled debut CD, but without a significant hit to stimulate sales, it sold fewer units. This despite the inclusion of Keith Sweat and Gerald Levert's vocal contributions to "Don't Cry," a song co-written by Sweat. This is more mellow then the first album; the ballads are less dramatic, yet still powerfully executed. The guys seem more confident with their singing. "Holiday" is nice, and most will enjoy its family reunion message. The comedy skits that appeared on the first LP are gone, so this may not be as immediately engaging to some. Tolliver sings his lines with the precision of a diamond cutter, while Champion improvises and embellishes his lines with shamelessly soulful vocal runs. Harmony lovers will freak listening to "Don't Cry"; the assembly of voices takes the song to new levels. They sound better than Boyz II Men on the lush ballad, Levert, Sweat, Tolliver, and Champion should do a whole LP together -- they're bad! Traci Hale and Emanuel Officer contribute backing vocals to the floater. The duo remind you of their immense rapping skills on "Better by Myself," a hip-hop club number. The Cleveland natives (Dave Tolliver DJs on WZAK-FM) get low on "First Day," an infectious slinker about a sexual attraction. The 12 numbers are comparably even in appeal; there's not a skip-worthy track on the disc.

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