Ciara’s latest album has all the right elements: good producers, catchy hooks and beats that bump with dance, pop and R&B flavors. But for some reason, “Fantasy Ride” isn’t as fun as the title suggests.
The 13-track set is mediocre at best, though it boasts production work by Polow Da Don, Danja, Dr. Luke and The-Dream, and has guest appearances from Chris Brown and Ludacris.
It’s not that the songs on the CD sound bad – tracks like “Ciara to the Stage” and “Tell Me What Your Name Is” show the singer at the top of her game. But the majority of the disc sounds just like what we’ve heard from the 23-year-old sensation before – and that’s not fulfilling.
The energy-charged “Work” featuring Missy Elliott sounds just like the 2005 hit “Lose Control,” Elliott’s song on which Ciara appeared. Most of the other tunes – “Like a Surgeon,” “Pucker Up” and “Never Ever,” for example – are enjoyable but show she hasn’t grown much as a singer since her last release.
Ciara shines, however, on the Janet Jackson-esque “Love, Sex, Magic” with Justin Timberlake and on “Keep Dancin’ On Me.”
With her 2004 debut CD “Goodies” and 2006′s “The Evolution,” Ciara had lots of hits but few songs that stood the test of time; “Fantasy Ride” is no different.
“Fantasy Ride” (Jive Label Group)