On their fan frenzy-inducing sophomore disc, No Strings Attached
, 'N Sync cut loose with an aggressive, dance- and R&B-driven sound that should expand their popularity beyond MTV's "Total Request Live" teen audience. The maturing boy band refine their sweet harmonies with the help of top tastemaker Teddy Riley
, who funks up a cover of Johnny Kemp's '80s dance classic "Just Got Paid," and TLC producer She'kspere, who adds a gritty edge to the jilted-lover track "It Makes Me Ill." Two JC Chasez-penned club pumpers -- the drum 'n' bass-tinged "Digital Get Down" and the hyper "Space Cowboy (Yippie-Yi-Yay)," featuring Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes
-- reflect the group's new and improved "dirty pop" sound. But the Orlando quartet's faithful female fan base need not worry. No Strings Attached
has its share of tear-jerking slow jams, including the stirring, a cappella "I Thought She Knew" and the poignant "That's When I'll Stop Loving You." Whether they make you weep or sweat, 'N Sync outcharm their peers with an album that, despite its title, is deeply committed to at least one thing: rhythm-saturated pop.