Beat Club/ Interscope – 2001 – 77 minutes

Funny how life goes in circles. When he was growing up in La Grange, Georgia, (population 432), Bubba Sparxxx's nearest neighbours lived a mile away. If the early success of this album is anything to go by, his future neighbours will live a mile away too – in the next mansion down the road.

Signed to starmaker producer Tim 'Timbaland' Mosely's new Beat Club Imprint, Sparxxx's debut is a curious but winning mix of urban beats and rustic rhymes – think Boyz 'n' The Woods and you're getting close to his charms. His pig-wrestling, tractor-pulling tribute 'Ugly' is already huge, but there's plenty here to prove that he's not a one-hit wonder.

'Any Porch' puts Spanish guitars alongside cows and horses, 'Well Water' finds Sparxxx sharing the mic with a choir in a tale of where he's from and where he's going while 'All The Same' sounds like he's been busy constructing robotic funk in the shed out back. At 19 tracks and 77 minutes, Sparxxx could do with trimming back a little, but 'Dark Days, Bright Nights' is more white hope than white hype.

Harry Guerin

Tracklisting: Take Off - Ugly - Any Porch - Bubba Talk - Lovely - All the Same - Get Right - Open Wide - Infected - Twerk A Little - Takem to the Water - Well Water - The 1st Whutchacallit - Bubba Sparxxx - Regardless - If It's Bumpin' - Dark Days, Bright Nights - Handle of Beam