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I Am...Sasha Fierce

Beyonce still proves that she's an all-around good performer even though her attempt to branch out into an alter ego fails a little.

Rating: 6 / 10

Ed Power, 24 Nov 2008

Beyoncé’s career has always felt like a tightrope walk between big-lunged balladry and pumped-up raunch. On her third solo record, she actually calls attention to this tension. Split between two discs, the album is credited both to Beyoncé and to her sassed-up alter ego Sasha Fierce. But the divide isn’t as clear cut as Knowles seems to believe: Sasha Fierce numbers ‘Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)’ and ‘Radio’ don’t quite live up to their smokin’ diva billing (the former is essentially a reworked ‘Independent Woman’, the latter a rather sappy ballad) and the supposedly more reserved first CD serves up surprising quantities of auto-tuned kinkiness (‘Halo’, ‘Satellites’). What unites both discs is Beyoncé’s 800-watt charisma: a light that shines through the haze of try-too-hard pretentiousness that might have sunk a lesser performer.

Rating: 6 / 10
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