Q - 10/00, p.1243 stars out of 5
- "...Mya demonstrates enough sass to suggest a sunny future..."
Uncut - 10/00, p.864 stars out of 5
- "...Her debut is a crafted, coffee-rich affair blending soul and swing....It's a grower which oozes class..."
Vibe - 4/00, pp.173-4
"...the starlet has decided to show off her range...as if she and her top-notch producers attempted to wipe out the competition by transforming Mya into each of her rivals in turn....a grand tour through the ever-changing moods of female adolescence..."
The Source - 5/00, p.231
"...Reaching out to hip-hop heads....Mya proves she can hold her own in this competitive game of young female musicians....She's well on her way [to] the class of elite divas..."
Personnel includes: Mya, Jadakiss, Left Eye, Jordan Knight.
Producers include: Swizz Beatz, Wyclef Jean, Jerry Wonder, Knobody, C. Tricky Stewart.
Recorded at Studio 56 and American Studios, Hollywood, California.
Personnel: Scott Schwertfeger (guitar, keyboards); Marlon Williams (guitar); Joe Davi (acoustic guitar); Rick Davies, Robert Aaron (horns); Christopher "Tricky" Stewart (keyboards, programming); Dahoud Darien, Michael Cain (keyboards); Sean Hurley (bass guitar); Norman Hedman (percussion); Livio Harris, Doc Little, Anthony Dent, Kevin "She'kspere" Briggs, Pro-Jay, Thicke (programming); Traci Hale, Mya Harrison (background vocals).
Audio Mixers: Manny Marroquin; Glen Marchese; Arthnor; Dylan Vaughan; Andy Grassi; Soulshock; Steve Hodge; Tony Maserati .
Recording information: American Studios, North Hollywood, CA; Avatar Studios, New York, NY; Blue Jay Studios, Los Angeles, CA; Chung King Studios, NY, NY; Doppler Studio, Atlanta, GA; Flyte Tyme Studios, Edna, MN; Murlyn Studios, Stockholm, Sweden; Pacifique Studios, North Hollywood, CA; Sound On Sound Recording, NY, NY; Studio 56, Hollywood, CA; The Hit Factory, NY, NY; Triangle Sound, Atlanta, GA; Westlake Audio, Los Angeles, CA.
Unknown Contributor Role: Florian Ammon.
Arrangers: Karlin; Soulshock.
With her follow-up to her commercially successful debut album, Mya has taken a small step towards shedding her squeaky-clean image and embracing a more mature sound. Many of the best moments on Fear of Flying come with the help of other artists such as Jadakiss of the Lox and Left-Eye from TLC. With producer Swizz Beatz behind the soundboard for her and rapper Jadakiss making his presence felt on "Best of Me," the single is the album's highlight. "Takin' Me Over" featuring Left-Eye shows that when pushed Mya can hold her weight among R&B heavyweights. Without the energy of collaborators in the mix, many of her solo tracks wander into predictability. The album relies too heavily on tepid ballads such as the title track and "Man of My Life." Yet songs like "Can't Believe," "For the First Time," and "Lie Detector" show an emotional depth that lacked in her debut. Mya's sophomore effort proves that she is a promising young talent, but still has yet to develop the chops necessary to rank among the best of R&B divas. ~ Jon Azpiri