By EW Staff
Updated August 28, 1992 at 04:00 AM EDT

Skin

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Ephrain Lewis: Skin (Elektra) Over the last three years, black British artists such as Soul II Soul and Seal (of ”Crazy” fame) have been churning out danceable, poetic soul music and sailing to the top of the American pop charts. Now, singer-songwriter Ephraim Lewis makes the transatlantic crossing with more of a pop-rock approach to R&B on his debut album, Skin. The largely acoustic album flows from jazz-tinged ballads to reggae-pulsed dance tracks to uncut Stax-reminiscent funk. Lewis has a flair for memorable melodies and unexpected harmonies, and his love-obsessed lyrics are consistently colorful and poignant. A vocalist equally at home in the baritone doldrums or the falsetto stratosphere, Lewis issues icy, lushly overdubbed melisma on the Prince-like ”It Can’t Be Forever” and wails operatic yet churchy riffs over his own choral backgrounds on ”Drowning in Your Eyes.” Skin documents the arrival of an artist who is anything but another fly-by-night love man with a sing-along hook and a photogenic look. A- -Gordon Chambers

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Skin

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