Top positive review
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Ageless and Evergreen
on 25 February 2006
When Barbra and Barry Gibb released Guilty in 1980, it became an instant smash, and gave Barbra her only #1 single ‘Woman In Love’ (recently destroyed by the blonde one from Atomic Kitten). Since then, it has remained one of her best loved albums by fans and her best selling disc. So when Columbia Records announced in early 2005 that the duo were to reunited in the studio for Guilty Too (or Guilty Pleasures in the US), the excitement amongst Streisand fans was high. Could Barbra and Barry match or even better their original Grammy award winning accomplishment?
Well, in an answer – not quite – but full marks for trying. The truth is Guilty One (that’s what I call it now) is one of those albums that cannot and should not be improved on. It was released when Barbra was basking in the glory of her late 1970’s smash hits with Donna Summer and Neil Diamond, and found a new fan base with her movie ‘A Star Is Born’. On Guilty One, Barbra’s vocal performances on tracks like ‘Promises’ and ‘Make It Like A Memory’ (a personal favourite) have stood the test of time, and following the decline of disco music in 1979, The Bee Gees needed a voice and production that could showcase their musical abilities.
But what Guilty Too has accomplished is bringing two talents back together for the sheer enjoyment of each others company and appreciation of their talents.
Guilty Too has standout tracks, in particular ‘Stranger In A Strange Land’, giving Barbra one of her greatest vocal performances for some time. Her cover of ‘Our Love Don’t Throw It Away’ is outstanding and should have been pushed as a single. ‘Night Of My Life’ sees Barbra doing dance – yes dance! - Why surprised? she did have successes with ‘No More Tears’, ‘Main Event’ and ‘Emotion’. If you are able to obtain the single for ‘Come Tomorrow’, you will have the Love To Infinity remix of ‘Night’, which is a great and should have been included on the bonus disc. ‘Letting Go’ is simply brilliant. Reminiscent to ‘Answer Me’ from ‘Streisand Superman’, Barbra’s control on the high notes shows that her voice is still immaculate. Other highlights include ‘Above The Law’, a sort of sequel to ‘Guilty’, and in my opinion should have been the single instead of ‘Come Tomorrow’. Both of these tracks are duets with Barry. ‘All The Children’ has that rock feel much like ‘Life Story’ (from Guilty One) and ‘Golden Dawn’ is superb.
Guilty Too has attained platinum status in the UK and has sold well worldwide. I would recommend this to all Barbra fans as this will no doubt be a valued edition to that collection. However, if you just starting your Streisand CD collection, I would recommend you purchase the original Guilty before trying this.
Guilty Too is a wonderful album and deserves success. It is great to hear Barbra perform on a pop orientated album – and Barry Gibb has risen to the challenge of producing whom many consider the greatest female vocalist of all time.