The 21-year-old Chicago native Jeremih Felton offers a winning combination on his debut album. His voice is nimble and youthful, and echoes the playful style of ‘90s R&B stars like Raphael Saadiq (Tony! Toni! Toné!) and Slim (of 112). Musically, he takes his cues from contemporary producer The-Dream, whose clever, catchy hybrids of pop, R&B, and club music have given them all new life. Male R&B stars can often come off overbearing, but Jeremih isn’t domineering in form or content. The album flies by on its author’s fleet-footed charm. “Runway” and “Jumpin” are the kind of songs that can get a club full of people singing in unison to the chorus, while “Starting All Over” displays a poignant, vulnerable soulfulness that recalls Jeremih’s idol, Stevie Wonder. Still, Jeremih has no interest in becoming a retro act, and the best songs on his debut catch the energy of the present moment and run with it. As catchy, hook-laden come-ons with sound designs that are both curious and delirious, “Birthday Sex” and “Break Up To Make Up” rank alongside the best recent hits by T-Pain and The-Dream.

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