Mario's New AlbumTurning Point
Mario, "Turning Point" - December 17, 2004
Singer Mario may only be 18, but he has already reached a crossroad on his path to manhood: player or poet? On the song "Let Me Love You", Mario is a poet. Soulful and sincere, the song is a ballad worthy of school dances for teenagers and candlelight dinners for their parents. But the rest of the album is Mario's sad attempt at being a player. The result is an album full of superficiality and fluff. Take the track "18" for instance. It sounds like Mario is dissing Usher on it only to turn around and try to emulate him on the track "Boom." Make up your mind, Mario. This is only Mario's second album, so, hopefully, with maturation and better writing (he could stand to pen some tunes of his own), he will blossom into the singer he is on his single, "Let Me Love You". Only time will tell.Source: http://www.detnews.com/2005/cdreviews/0501/07/H09-35659.htm
Two years after getting his foot in the door of contemporary urban music with a straight-faced cover of Biz Markie's "Just a Friend," Mario returned with his sophomore album, Turning Point, and its money lead single, "Let Me Love You". Produced and co-written by the peerless Scott Storch, himself fresh off the summertime success of his "Lean Back" chart-topper for Terror Squad, "Let Me Love You" has all the makings of a gigantic urban hit. It's by far the best song Mario has yet recorded, and it's one of the best contemporary R&B songs of the year, right up there with the best offerings of Usher, Alicia Keys, and company. It's that good, for real -- the sort of slow-dance song that endures over the years, always bringing back treasured memories of tender love, whether fulfilled or disallowed, as either sort befits the song's sense of longing for love. However, there's not much else here on Turning Point that comes close to matching the balladic magic of "Let Me Love You". The other immediate highlight is "Boom," a by-the-numbers rewrite of Usher's "Yeah," which likewise boasts Lil Jon's trademark production, a guest rap cameo (from Juvenile, in this case), a dance club theme, and a catchy, simple one-syllable refrain. There's also an album-closing remix of "Let Me Love You" that aims for the streets, featuring grown-up raps by Jadakiss and T.I. as well as a much edgier yet still infectious beat. Some of the slower songs like "How Could You" are quite likable, in a quiet storm sort of way. Above all, though, it's "Let Me Love You" and its remix that make Turning Point a noteworthy effort for this teenager and a fine second album overall.
MARIO - Mario biography
Mario - Turning Point
Let Me Love You Lyrics