Best of the Rest: Xscape’s All I Need

Traces of My Lipstick album cover
Xscape’s relative obscurity is one of the biggest crimes in black music. They remain the only group that sings as well (both individually and as a group), perhaps even better, then En Vogue. And yet history has not given them the respect and admiration for what is a stellar, still listenable, body of work.

That said, Xscape actually made smart single choices, but the one mistake they made was not to release this song, All I Need, written by group member Tamika Scott, from their third and final album, Traces of my Lipstick.

Here Tamika and Tiny sing lead, with Tiny doing the sultry begging thing that only she can do while Tamika is a lil tougher in her phrasing. What I like about this song is that the changes are very subtle.  These changes give the song an emotional fluidity that you feel intuitively, which few songs employ.  The hook then becomes the least important part of the song as your attention is drawn to the subtle emotional shifts that happen between Tamika’s second verse and the hook, and the hook and the bridge.

Best of the Rest – Full List
Best of the Rest – Explained

About tlewisisdope

I write. I live in DC.
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