Sunday, April 06, 2008

Lessons To Be Learned - Gabriella Cilmi

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I can imagine there was great delight in the Radio 2 playlist office when they first heard Sweet About Me; it ticks almost every MOR box you could wish for. Me, well I was more intrigued by the fact that this album was being "overseen" by Xenomania.

And in an essence, their presence is what sets this really rather good album apart from the chasing pack. Their eye for a catchy pop tune is undiminished and shines through like a beacon here and the fact that they're serious about pop, but not too-self serious, means that it immediately bypasses the Amy Winehouse clone argument.

Save The Lies might get a little too close to Anastacia for comfort, but it's a cracking start to the album and sets things up very nicely indeed. It's the more uptempo tracks that most grabbed my attention, the best of the bunch being Don't Wanna Go To Bed Now and Cigarettes and Lies, and even the cover version of Echo Beach works well, albeit in a camp way.

It's by no means perfect, perhaps being a little too reliant on ballads for my liking, but there is a definite sense that this could be the start of something special. Of course, Joss Stone seemed like a great talent on the back of her debut, so you'd be wise not to get too excited just yet; but on balance, Cilmi certainly looks as if she could have a bright future ahead of her.

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