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CD REVIEW

Kevin Lyttle

KEVIN LYTTLE

Lyttle has come out of nowhere to top the charts internationally with his huge soca hit, "Turn Me On," and he follows it with this irresistible collection of similarly infectious grooves, which should also translate to American success. Lyttle has a lithe, buttery voice, and he rides these airy beats for giddy results. His music -- a mix of soca, R&B, and dancehall, with an occasional nod to hip-hop -- is made for hot summer nights and party hopping. Unlike some dancehall artists, Lyttle keeps things light as he slyly offers up his heart and vows to be undyingly faithful. With a slew of producers including Scott Storch and Adrian Bailey, Lyttle makes sure melody is supreme on tracks like the spry "Dancing Like Making Love" and the beat-happy "Drive Me Crazy." He gets assistance from Spragga Benz, who adds a little grit on four tracks, as well as a sharp MC turn from Assassin on "Screaming Out My Name." There's also a surprisingly seductive cover of Terrence Trent D'Arby's "Sign Your Name," which casts the love song to a Caribbean beat without watering it down. Lyttle has come up with an ingratiating formula that mostly hits the sweet spot. Lyttle is on the One Love Reggae Harborfest at FleetBoston Pavilion Sept. 8.

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