By Ryan Dombal
Updated May 08, 2006 at 04:00 AM EDT

This dispensable loverman may reference Marvin Gaye on the cover of Director, his fourth LP, and name-drop Smokey Robinson and Al Green in the album’s lyrics, but his soggy quiet-storm R&B recalls those legends in only the most shallow sense. Slight reprieves arrive with the Jermaine Dupri-produced horndog bouncer ”You Know What” and ”4 Minutes,” which brings 24’s real-time shtick (guess how long it lasts) to generic soul. But milquetoasty also-rans like ”Imagination” dominate — and make you wish Avant had one.

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