‘I’m The Reason’ launches the album off to a great start; with its Go-Go inspired production and excellent vocal arrangements, the song highlights both the album’s strongest area as well as, what reveals itself to be, its biggest detriment – the slicker than slick, high production value. Whilst on some tracks such as the standout lead single ‘Got Me Going’ (produced by Mario Winans), the guys flow effortlessly over the beat, other instances draw attention to the glossed-over holes in Bad Boy’s newest collective.
Still, when the album ‘gets it right’, it’s hard to deny its proficiency. Producer Bryan Michael Cox is at the helm of some of the LP’s most solid offerings which include standout ballad ‘Are We In This Together?’ – a personal favourite, ‘Don’t Fight The Feeling’ and the over-performed, yet still thoroughly listenable ‘Exclusive’. Other notable cuts include the Motown-esque ‘Silly Love’ (despite its cheesy lyrics/arrangements), the steamy ‘This Is What It Feels Like’ as well as ‘Since You’ve Been Gone’ – which undoubtedly has to be a single candidate. Another highlight is ‘In My Bed’, which sees the group’s soulful vocals compliment the gritty street-tinged production.
Filler abounds, however, in the form of tracks such as The Runners produced ‘Come With Me’. The chorus sees group sing “Come with me, I’ll put you fast asleep”. Indeed, the song, despite its decent production value, bored me half to sleep. Elsewhere, The Runners contribution to the record again doesn’t always hit the mark, as evidenced by ‘Come In’. Here, the ironically vintage B.M-Cox sounding beat essentially swallows the group’s vocals, reducing them to a mere echo of what they should sound like.
Despite its shortcomings, ‘Day26’ is a polished, well-sequenced effort by Bad Boy’s latest additions. With the undeniable vocal prowess of the group both individually and as a unit, in conjunction with the endless potential they posses, Day26 could well be on their way to championing Bad Boy’s comeback.