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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful voice - lovely songs
Mary-Jess Leaverland is a student studying Music and Chinese at the University of Sheffield. Her course involved work-experience in China and it was there, singing in Chinese, she won a competition (the Chinese equivalent of X-Factor).

This debut album has twelve top-quality songs, with strong poetry in the lyrics; seven were co-written by Mary-Jess. Her...
Published on 29 Sep 2011 by Christine M. Pluck

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3 of 19 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing
I haven't given this cd a good rating simply because I found it difficult to understand the lyrics. If she wants to be considered a serious cross-over singer, her diction needs to dramatically improve. I waited to make this review until I watched her appear with Russell Watson in his concert at the Royal Albert Hall earlier this year. This confirmed her poor diction. You...
Published on 21 Nov 2011 by John Hourigan


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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful voice - lovely songs, 29 Sep 2011
By 
This review is from: Shine (Audio CD)
Mary-Jess Leaverland is a student studying Music and Chinese at the University of Sheffield. Her course involved work-experience in China and it was there, singing in Chinese, she won a competition (the Chinese equivalent of X-Factor).

This debut album has twelve top-quality songs, with strong poetry in the lyrics; seven were co-written by Mary-Jess. Her voice is outstanding, her diction clear and the recording is excellent.

The opening track (the best of all in my opinion) "Are You The Way Home?" shows the Chinese influence in her music and Track 8, the delightful "Yue Guang Al Ren" (A love before time), is sung largely in Chinese. Track 2, "Glorious", with a strong orchestrated rhythm from percussion and strings, shows the full range of her capabilities.

Other particularly strong songs include; Track 3 "Lighthouse Of Mine" (heart-warming poetry), Track 4 "Rising From The Fire", Track 11 "Burning Love" (with a wonderful piano climax) and Track 12 "Heaven Is Empty" (where again the Chinese Influence is unmistakable). In fact there isn't a duff song on the album - the CD notes include all the song lyrics over which it is worth meditating. In common with the other reviewers. I have no hesitation in recommending this outstanding and unique album.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Shine, 20 Aug 2011
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This review is from: Shine (Audio CD)
When I heard some samples from this album I thought that it was nothing special and that I had heard it before, however after reading the reviews on here and hearing A Love Before Time in full I thought I would give it a chance and I am glad I did. I think I dismissed Mary-Jess too soon and after listening to the album it turns out that she has a beautiful voice and is very talented. On this album she has co-written many of the songs and I think all of the songs are well chosen for her voice and it is very cohesive as a sound and as a message and shine really sums up the message of the songs. I love how the album sounds very Enya like and I love the chinese influence on the album and the use of different instruments and percussion to get this sound.

Some of my favourites:

Are You The Way Home? This is really catchy, you can hear the chinese influence- a lovely song
Lighthouse of Mine- I love the message of this song
Glorious- I thought this would be boring after hearing a sample, but is really shows Mary-Jess' range.
A Love Before Time- it is worth buying this album for this song alone, Mary-Jess sounds even better in chinese than English, I think she should do a whole album of chinese songs- this is really atmospheric and really well done.
Burning Love- this has amazing orchestration- especially towards the end.
An Angel Walking- I think this is based on 'The Promise' from the film the piano- the lyrics are good and I love this melody.

This is just a few of the good tracks- the ones that stand out for me- Mary-Jess is very talented and she deserved to do very well. Buy this album and you will not regret it, Mary-Jess has real talent!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very pleasnt music, 9 May 2013
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This review is from: Shine (Audio CD)
This cd was purchased after hearing Mary Jess sin on the final of China's Pop Idol. Her voice is fantastic and a delight to listen to.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gift, 10 Mar 2013
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This review is from: Shine (Audio CD)
I bought one of this young ladies CD's and liked it so much that I got the second one for my husband as he said she has a pure voice.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Shine, 8 Mar 2013
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This review is from: Shine (Audio CD)
Very enjoyable, modern but not too much. Would buy more of her music, lovely voice. Great cover. Good quality recordings.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a good quality album... a thing of rarity these days, 6 Mar 2013
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This review is from: Shine (Audio CD)
absolutely beautiful! fantastic voice, and an interesting infusion of west and chinese melody. why we don't have artists like Mary-Jess in today's chart saddens me... but with this album, it brings hope to the revive the golden era of the 80's-90's music industry yet again!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely voice,, 22 Feb 2013
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linda Pidgley (Bournemouth U.K) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Shine (Audio CD)
Heard her once at the Bournemouth International Centre, she has a fresh, clean voice has a variety of tempos on this c.d. Is well worth the money
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A pure voice without a false American accent for a change., 12 Jan 2013
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This review is from: Shine (Audio CD)
Having heard Mary Jess at a live gig I bought her album Shine on Amazon. I am not disappointed. The combination of tracks has something for everyone.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing voice, 26 Dec 2012
By 
D. M. Lord (West Midlands, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Shine (Audio CD)
I had been looking forward to listening to this album for a long, long time. I was not disappointed! Wonderfully clear, Mary-Jess sings with a powerful intensity and emotionally captivates the listener. Of particular note is the perfectly clear bilingual Yue Guang Ai Ren, the song which originally launched her into the public's eye. This album is a perfect addition to any music collection.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic new sound!, 22 Jan 2012
This review is from: Shine (Audio CD)
Haven't heard such a fresh new sound in such a long time. It has been fantastic to have on the back ground for working to. Took a gamble when i brought the album, had watched her on the Alan Titchmarsh show and knew she sang the theme to Downton abbey. I'm glad that I did take the gamble!
Would recommend to anyone!
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