Thursday, December 31, 2009

Adios, 2009

As the year finally draws to a close, I look forward to the start of a new one, and all the wonderful opportunities and experiences it will undoubtedly bring.

As always, I swear that I won't make a list of resolutions, but do so anyway. And no, the one I posted in an earlier entry is nowhere close to the real thing. :)

I did promise to review a couple of albums, so let's get that out of the way before 2010 officially begins.

Adam Lambert's For Your Entertainment is a dazzling debut, full of bold melodies and even bolder lyrics. Boasting Lady Gaga and Pink as collaborators, the tracks are uptempo with heavy dance influences and radio-friendly tunes. From the opening number - the pumping Music Again - to the cheeky Strut and Sure Fire Winners, it's guaranteed to keep you awake, or jolt you out of whatever stupor you might be in.

I like to blast it on the way home after a night shift so I don't fall asleep at the wheel. How's that for safe driving, heh.

Personally though, I prefer the slower songs, where Adam's vocals truly shine and make you realize that voters made a big mistake with Kris Allen.

Track #5, Soaked, has Middle-eastern inflections which blend seamlessly with Adam's glory notes. A Loaded Smile drips with sensuality as he tenderly caresses each note. Sleepwalker has a darker edge, buoyed yet again by Adam's heartfelt delivery. And Aftermath allows the listener a chance to savour his lower register, which is, in my opinion, tonnes better than the higher octaves he's famous for.

But it is Broken Open which seals the deal. With its skeletal accompaniment, this New Age-flavoured track lays Adam's voice bare, producing an almost choirboy-solo-in-a-cathedral quality.

Little wonder he's beaten Kris severely in album sales. Don't suppose he'll come to Singapore for a concert?

Robbie Williams' much anticipated Reality Killed The Video Star sees him back in fine form, following the dismal reviews of Rudebox ( which I didn't think was that bad to begin with ). I rate this close to his best album so far, namely Sing When You're Winning, which launched chart-toppers like Rock DJ, Better Man and Supreme.

On Reality, Rob returns to his pop/rock/dance roots, complete with tongue-in-cheek lyrics. Lots of catchy melodies here ( I'm not the type to memorize verses ), with favourites including the hard-hitting Bodies, the obvious Pet Shop Boys-inspired Last Days Of Disco, an infectiously fun Do You Mind?, and the George Michael tribute Starstruck, where RW sounds eerily similar to the former, and the whole number is a dead ringer for an original GM piece titled Star People.

Again, will you please come to Singapore for a gig already? Haven't seen you since 2001!

Last but not least, Jamie Cullum's The Pursuit.
Definitely more mature, continuing his trademark preference for experimenting, but still not as enjoyable as his best work on Catching Tales.

He does good covers of Rihanna's Don't Stop The Music and Stephen Sondheim's Not While I'm Around ( from Sweeney Todd ); standouts include Mixtape and Wheels, mostly because of the interesting melodies and tempo switches.

My favourite of the lot, though, is Music Is Through, a 7-minute whopper that serves as a fitting finale. I've played it to death on the stereo. :)

Due to time constraints, I'm going to sign off here.

But I will say this before I go - if you have Starhub cable, watch out for 3 new TV series coming this month, namely Hung ( starts this weekend ), The Good Wife, and Glee.

Glee! Woohoo!

Happy New Year everyone. :)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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