- The Washington Times - Monday, November 22, 2004

Destiny’s Child

Destiny Fulfilled

Sony

Fresh from a three-year hiatus and various solo successes, Destiny’s Child has kept their promise to reunite for a sixth album, “Destiny Fulfilled.”

The 11-track disc is the first for the Texas trio of Beyonce Knowles, Michelle Williams, and Kelly Rowland since their Grammy-winning turn with 2001’s “Survivor.”

The new release, however, could be their most personal album to date, with its songs about love lost and found, growing pains and inner reflections. Beyonce, in particular, has let her personal life seep into her lyrics. Although she hasn’t “officially” acknowledged her relationship with rapper Jay-Z, his influence on “Soldier” — a tune that has Miss B pining for a guy from Brooklyn who likes “country girls” — is as undeniable as his presence on “Crazy In Love,” her megahit single during DC’s sabbatical.

Elsewhere, Miss Williams gets her most prominent turn in the spotlight, to date. But the additional exposure isn’t that favorable. Her nasal twang, which stood out unfavorably on “Survivor,” is still a jarring distraction, marring an otherwise enjoyable “Girl.”

By contrast, Beyonce and Miss Rowland both show significant maturity in their vocals. The two make up for Miss Williams’ shortcomings on “Love” and “Bad Habit” — proving that their sum is better than their separate parts.

If nothing else, “Destiny Fufilled” will certainly silence the rumors of dissension within the group. The glamorous divas also have taken a role in the album’s production; a Herculean task that’s further enhanced by superstar music producers Rodney Jerkins, Andre Harris, Vidal Davis and up-and-coming powerhouse 9th Wonder.

Moreover, the time apart hasn’t frayed their professionalism. Perhaps a three-year layoff is just what the ladies of Destiny’s Child needed to deliver such a mature and sensational sound.

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