Boyz II Men

It’s been 17 years since Michael Bivins introduced the pop world to Boyz II Men—memorably by reading a newspaper on the john during their debut video “Motownphilly.” If you were of a certain age, say between 10 and 25, the four guys from Philly became the soundtrack of your memories: they crooned during your first slow dance and first kiss, walked you down the aisle at graduation and comforted you through heartbreak. Their later albums claim no part of your soul; still, they’re pleasant enough ditties to nod along to while screaming for monster hits like “It’s So Hard to Say Goodbye” and “On Bended Knee.” The martial snare drums of “Water Runs Dry” insist that no group since has so mastered the art of the apology song—nearly all of their slow jams are mea culpas for sticking it in the wrong chick or failing to buy anniversary flowers. (In contrast, Usher’s continual “Confessions” read as shallow and defensive.) And in a radio moment when every bump and grinder is merely a horndog aerobics instructor telling the ladies when and how to bend over and shake it, Boyz II Men knows that the surest way to drop panties is to coo, “Girl, your wish is my command.”

Click here for Boyz II Men in the IE Weekly

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