1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
So much better than I thought it would be! Thanks must go to Dave Stewart!
, 15 July 2011
This review is from: In Your Dreams (Audio CD)
Being a huge Stevie fan since the mid 90s I should have been looking forward to this album like I did with her last solo offering 'Trouble In Shangri-La' where I picked it off the shelf and placed it by my heart until I reached the till!
Stevie's voice of late is a lot poorer as shown on the at times embarrasingly awful 'Soundstage Session' album from two years ago. The words lazy and flat come to mind. Stevie needs to surround herself not with sycophants but people who will tell her that she needs to make more of an effort.
Therefore, news of a new album has filled me with dread; dread for flat vocals and tuneless melodies. I was surprisingly wrong and rate this album second in her solo career, behind 'The Wild Heart'. I have never quite rated 'Belladonna' as much as the average Stevie fan by the way.
Yes, her voice has changed a lot in ten years but producer Dave Stewart has kicked her up the arse, it seems, and told her to make that effort. She can still reach those notes. I just wish to God that she tries them live more often. Musically it's more akin to 'Belladonna', having a country-rock feeling, but it's far more subtle.
The album is on a high with the sweet Annabel Lee (with lyrics taken from Edgar Allan Poe,) Everybody Loves You (with beautiful harmonies with Dave,) Ghosts Are Gone (with a guitar riff up there with Edge of Seventeen,) Italian Summer ('so romantic' as Stevie sings,) and Cheaper Than Free (with again beautiful harmonies with Dave finishing off the album.)
A major embarrassment is, however, 'Soldier's Angel' where Stevie's ego and self-importance shine through. Next she'll be saying she has played a major hand in a successful war!
Yes, most of the songs are co-written, but so what! Yes, most of the songs are old, but so what! What you have is the realisation that Dave Stewart is the man to thank. I have been wishing for a Buckingham Nicks II as I've always loved Stevie and Lindsey's harmonies. In my opinion, Stevie and Dave's vocals compliment each other so well that I think an officially joint album should be made.
Well done Dave (and I suppose Stevie!)
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