Pharrell In My Mind (EMI) Having spent more than a decade churning out hits for other artists, Pharrell Williams - one half of all-conquering production duo the Neptunes, and a member of the sporadically active band N*E*R*D - has finally done what most of his counterparts did years ago: gone solo. However, all that work for other artists appears to have undermined his own. Williams' best seems to have already been and gone, leaving his debut, In My Mind, with a sad sense of deja vu. In My Mind won't disappoint admirers of the Neptunes' fantastic hybrid of jarring electronic beats, old-school hip hop and funk. The distinctively regal jabs of synthesisers boost the quirky atmosphere of Can I Have it Like That, How Does it Feel and Young Girl. But however well done, even the best tracks here pale beside the hilariously pompous pop workouts Williams delivered for the likes of Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake and Nelly. And in an attempt to claw back some street-cred - the cover features Williams as a cartoon skate punk - he steers clear of the more superficial pop that made his name. Which would be all very well if he could pull off being the honey-voiced Lothario. Williams' vocal capabilities have never been his strong suit. His pleas to Take it Off (Dim the Lights) sound as strained as the pretentiously sexual lyrics. The same goes for when he takes the mic as MC. His rap and flow leave a lot to be desired - his intention to rouse his homies in Best Friend comes across as fumbling. That he has recruited an array of A-list vocalists to spice up the set - Kanye West, Jay-Z and Snoop Dogg - both undermines his own turns and fortunately salvages what would otherwise be a total disappointment.