R&B music is cluttered with so many boy bands that it’s hard to keep track of who’s who. But when it comes to distinction and “edging out” the competition while creating a league of their own, the men of Jagged Edge always manage to successfully stand out. With two phenomenal past albums–1998’s RIAA gold debut A Jagged Era, and 2000’s multiple-platinum smash J.E. Heartbreak–notched on the group’s collective belt, Richard Wingo, Kyle Norman, and twin brothers Brian and Brandon Casey are once again skillfully showing the world what real R&B sounds like on the third dynamic JE disk, Jagged Little Thrill. To prepare fans for what can only be described as a “higher level” of R&B on what is perhaps Jagged Edge’s most moving work to date, lead singer Brian says, “We weren’t scared to say anything on this album.”
Jagged Little Thrill’s lyrical fearlessness shows the group’s growth and will undoubtedly secure the group’s reputation on R&B’s legendary roster of icons. “We’ve discovered that we can make the type of music that we want to make and still send more of a message than in some of the past songs we’ve made,” says Brian. “We felt we could make a statement people haven’t made in a long time while keeping it real hot. Real up-to-date. And real fly.”
Jagged Little Thrill takes the listener on an emotionally stimulating ride. Stunning standouts like “No Respect” address issues of domestic abuse and disrespect. Lines like “Got no respect for them dudes that hit their women/Got no respect for them fools that leave their children/I just want to take care of my family/Got no respect if you ain’t trying to do the right thing,” will inspire and motivate change in the same way that “Let’s Get Married” moved lovers to the altar. And as “No Respect” checks the men, timeless tracks like “Head of the Household,” produced by Gary “Gizzo” Smith (“Promise”) represent the good guys of the world, reminding the ladies to stand by their man. “We dug deep on these songs, ” says Kyle. “We made a vow that we’d make songs that are reality, edgy, and not just funky or on the vibe of the moment.”
It’s this forward thinking that makes Jagged Little Thrill bring chills down the spine. Just as Jagged Edge’s sultry love song sound drove them straight into the hearts of their fans and to the top of the Billboard charts in the past, Jagged Little Thrill is filled with the quartet’s trademark heartfelt ballads. There are impeccable tracks like the dreamy “Can We Be Tight,” tearjerkers like “Goodbye”–which was produced by Jermaine Dupri, winner of ASCAP’s “Writer of the Year” (for the 3rd time in 5 years)–and the silken melody of “Remedy,” which finds SESAC Writer of the Year Bryan-Michael Cox (of the Noontime camp) helping the JE heartbreakers stroke the ladies right. And after they get deep, inspire change, and have you falling in love, Jagged Edge easily moves to a lighter note. They’ll have you on the dance floor while you’re shaking your rump to the funky first single, “Where the Party At” featuring Nelly. Then, they’ve got you swaying with Ludacris on unstoppable club bangers like “Cut Something” and “I Got It” featuring Trina. Executive-produced by Jermaine Dupri and co-produced by Jagged Edge, Jagged Little Thrill is older, more confident, and passionately focused. Wingo, Kyle, Brian and Brandon take you on an exhilarating ride. From beginning to end, Jagged Little Thrill is a thrilling trip that will undoubtedly drive the group straight to the top.
After a solid upbringing where they honed their vocal skills in church choirs, Jagged Edge first came together in Atlanta, Georgia. Connecticut natives Brian and Brandon moved to the Peach Tree State and connected with Kyle and a few other song men. Although they planned to sign with Michael Bivins and his Biv Ten label, it wasn’t meant to be. Changes were made. Xscape’s Kandi Burress brought Wingo to the group. A demo was shopped. And after hearing a live a capella performance by the quartet, Jermaine Dupri quickly signed the captivating crooners to his So So Def label. Always keeping writing duties within the group, Jagged Edge has stood out from the beginning. “We’ve always kept all of the writing in house. Jermaine trusted us,” says Kyle. “He never did that with any other group.” Three albums later, Jagged Edge keep minting the hits, daring to write about, and venture into, untapped territory. “Times change and we try to keep it fresh and new. We write our lyrics to reflect events that are going on in our lives,” says Wingo. “Without the meat of the music, which are the lyrics, you really don’t have anything,. So we try to improve each and every time.”
A Jagged Era was the fledgling beginning for four unknown talents. And JE Heartbreak was the double-platinum breakthrough that put them on the map. But Jagged Little Thrill signifies Jagged Edge’s graduation into the school of classic R&B acts–alongside New Edition, Jodeci, and Boys II Men. Jagged Little Thrill showcases undeniable maturity, growth and confidence as four men who can effectively say what they mean, build on the old, and slide in the new, while still keeping you grooving to each tune–every time.