Various Artists

Strawberries & Cream, Vol. 1

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The first volume of Strawberries & Cream is a decent compilation of late-'80s and early-'90s R&B that favors ballads of the loved-up variety. Strong songs that will no doubt bring back memories of young love for many, like the Force M.D.'s' "Tender Love," Roger's "I Want to Be Your Man," Michel'le's "Something in My Heart," En Vogue's "Giving Him Something He Can Feel," and Jade's upbeat "Don't Walk Away" are included, as are cringe-inducing "Top Five at Nine"-type crossover chucklers like Color Me Badd's "I Wanna Sex You Up." The bad aspect of the disc is its brevity; only 11 songs are featured, clocking in at just over three-quarter of an hour. Chuckii Booker ("Turned Away"), bad boy Mark Morrison ("Return of the Mack"), Changing Faces ("Stroke You Up"), LeVert ("Casanova"), and Silk ("Freak Me") round out the package. Those who have fond memories of R&B radio during this period should find plenty to love again, despite the thin track selection.

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