B5

Studio Album by released in 2005

B5 review

Bad Boy band of brothers from Atlanta B5 – short for Breeding 5, a la The Jackson 5 – began as TNT Boyz but changed the name when youngest sibling Bryan joined up. The Breeding brothers range in age from 11 to 18. They are clearly being groomed to fill the gap left when boy band B2K broke up. They are not only vocalists but accomplished, acrobatic stage performers as well. Carnell, Dustin, Kelly, and Patrick won a number of talent competitions during the late '90s and early 2000s, developing their energetic performance style while gaining attention from a number of industry heavyweights. Sean "P. Diddy" Combs eventually took the group under his wings, signing them to Bad Boy and arranging a roster of reputable producers (including Rodney Jerkins, Ryan Leslie, and Corna Boyz) to collaborate with them for their debut album. The boys prove they can sing, dance and rap on their debut disc, which is a mix of high energy dance-pop songs and sweet ballads that may (or may not) make your hearts melt.

There are a lot of old-school comparisons and references that surround this group. Their name, B5, is a reference to The Jackson 5. The group's lead single, All I Do, is a remake of a Jackson Five song (one that was remade earlier by R&B group Troop). The opening song on their album is a minute a capella version of The Beatles classic Let It Be. The song Back In Your Arms even samples The Jackson 5's classic I Wanna Be Where You Are, complete with some of Michael Jackson's vocals. Even with all the old-school references, the thing that stands out is that the boys have talent. They showcase their vocals across songs that are for the most part simple and harmless. Most of the songs are love songs geared directly towards their teen girl target audience. U Got Me is a catchy, upbeat song with lyrics like "I'm on top of the world when I'm next to you." The album's most charming moments lie in the gently loping Heartbreak with its unexpected borrowing of the opening lines from A Taste Of Honey's version of Sukiyaki. Heartbreak deals with the first girl who has ever said "No". Teacher's Pet stands out from all the other songs because of its subject matter. It deals with the common phenomenon of having a crush on a hot teacher. This one isn't as innocent as the other songs but it's not nearly as sexual as some B2K songs.

The overall package of B5's self-titled debut it is competent and clean with a cheerful, upbeat flair. Besides, it is an R&B album that is genuinely child friendly lacking in intense adult subject matter or foul language. There are far too few of those options available today. In a sense, B5 really are a throwback to old-school groups. The boys are certainly handsome and charming enough to flutter more than a few young girls' hearts. Their music is clean enough even for your grandmother to enjoy. The album moves quickly (it's only 40 minutes long) and doesn't overstay its welcome. It remains to be seen whether or not B5 can be the J5 of this generation, but is entirely possible that they could have a very nice career ahead of them.