Now that the likes of Erykah Badu and Maxwell have broken their new stylings into the scene, many have followed in their steps.

Even the critics gave that specific genre of music a name ? neosoul. As if soul ever became old.

Years after Arrested Development developed an audience for down-to-earth R&B, many sought refuge in it ? shying away from the over-commercialized sound of the ’90s.

These key artists built a new platform from which artists can take off and hit the big time, such is the case with Alicia Keys.

Floetry is a new dynamic duo in line. Here two women join forces to produce the album “Floetic” with one being a floacist ? pronounced like lyricist ? and the other a songstress.

These two women have been stunning Philly’s soul arena, but they’re actually from London ? as indicated by the repetition of “SE5” on the geographic metaphor “Big Ben” as the opening interlude.

Then comes the MTV2 favorite and title track ? one of the weakest tracks on the album, but a pertinent introductive single.

The songs are on the slow side with a well-proportioned mixture of melodies and spoken words. The strong accents surface on “Ms. Stress” and the fluffy “Sunshine.”

The album picks up with “Fun” and the heavy-worded jam “Mr. Messed Up.”

Floetry has contributed some of their writing to some big names. They wrote Michael Jackson’s videoless hit “Butterflies.”

They recorded it on this album as a bonus track, but it falls flat because of its excruciating similarity to the hit.

“Butterflies” made other stars of high caliber ? Faith Evans, Brandy ? beg for a bit of the next big thing. This sudden industry interest is not the first of its kind. Remember Babyface or William Orbit?

It takes a couple of listens to get this album and even then only some tracks stand out. “Floetic” is also strikingly close to Jill Scott’s offerings, especially “Who Is Jill Scott? Words and Sounds Vol. 1.”

This album is enough to make Floetry buzzworthy, but more is required to make a well-rounded album.

Al-Qatami can be reached at

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