One of the things most R&B fans miss in the year 2020 is the lack of groups. Bluff City is here to fill the void with their debut release on BC3 ENT, Bc3. Initially gaining fans with covers of classic R&B songs on their YouTube channel, the group comprised of members Keem, “Loverboy Tre,” and Frank hit the mainstream in 2018 with the Troy Taylor penned “Let Me Show You.”
The group’s debut album showcases the smooth harmonies and quality songwriting. Opening with a lush intro, the album transitions into slow jam euphoria R&B fans can appreciate. The songs “Joy Ride,” “Bed,” and “Fetish,” which follow the intro of the album, would feel right at home on a nineties H-Town or Jodeci album.
Intimacy and sex are the central them of the group’s album. The group shows off its sensitive side on the ballads “Girl” and “Say I Do.” “Girl” is an eye-opening track that talks about the consequences of being a side dude while “Say I Do” is a wedding ballad that the under twenty-five crowd will like.
I must also commend the group for keeping the album free of guest appearances. Jacquees shows up on “Precision” and flows nicely with Bluff City’s vocals. I must point out that the album only has two up-tempo songs on the album “Doze Off” and “Pressure.” “Doze Off” has a summertime feel to it, while I can see fans of reggae liking “Pressure.” As I much enjoyed the group’s debut, I was hoping that the buzz singles “Tonight It’s Us,” “In That,” and “Let Me Show You” would’ve made the final cut of the album. Nevertheless, there is enough strong material on the album that makes up for the omissions.
While the album has many slow jams that center on sex, the group never comes off as corny with their lyrics. Some singers who shall remain nameless have made it a habit to come off as rappers as opposed to singers, which Bluff City avoids. The group could’ve quickly taken the route of an R&B Migos, but instead, with pristine vocals and impressively written songs, Bluff City’s debut is one of the biggest surprises of 2020.
Final Grade B+
Best Tracks “Bed,” “Joy Ride,” “Fetish,” “Say I Do”