TMZ has learned ... '90s singer Russell Neal from Hi-Five is in police custody ... after he told cops his wife was dead inside their apartment ... and he needed a lawyer.
Neal went to the local jail and apparently told Houston cops he and his wife had gotten into an argument Wednesday ... the singer reportedly asked for a lawyer and then clammed up.
Hi-Five's song "I Like the Way (The Kissing Game)" went to number one in 1991 ... and a year later they scored another hit with, "She's Playing Hard to Get."
The group's lead singer Tony Thompson famously died in 2007 after inhaling Freon.
Neal is currently being detained ... no charges have been filed.
The lawyer for Hi-Five, Chris Brown, tells TMZ, "We are aware of the situation and are presently evaluating it."