From the moment New Edition debuted with the Jackson Five-inspired CANDY GIRL, primary lead singer Ralph Tresvant was being compared to Michael Jackson. I think many expected him to eventually be the solo star from that group. Ironically, he ended being the last to release a solo album, which he finally did with this self-titled album from MCA Records in 1990. Enlisting producers like Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis to give him a collection of songs written perfectly for his unique falsetto, it also provided the perfect mix between fance, ballads, and mid-tempo songs.
The singles were released. SENSITIVITY and DO WHAT I GOTTA DO are two mellow tracks, while STONE COLD GENTLEMAN is a dance track featuring Bobby Brown doing a rap. I love all 3, but many of the album cuts are just as good, or even better, and could have singles too. SHE’S MY LOVE THANG, PUBLIC FIGURE (ORDINARY GUY), LOVE TAKES TIME and GIRL I CAN’T CONTROL IT are all good fast, dance songs. LAST NIGHT, I LOVE YOU (JUST FOR YOU) and ALRIGHT NOW are romantic slow jams. There’s also a rap version of Sensitivity to close out the album, which is pretty cool. All in all, and excellent album.