October 21st, 2007 16:14 EST
Review of Kelly Sweet's Debut Album
Born to an artist mother and a jazz pianist father, Kelly Sweet grew up within a creative environment, and knew at an early age that her calling would be music. Now, at 18-years-old, Sweet has released her debut album, “We Are One” under the Razor & Tie record company. Sweet co-wrote four of the twelve tracks on her first album, ending with an adult contemporary disc of mediocre, ethereal songs.
The love ballad title-track starts “We Are One.” The vocals are light, but Sweet’s high notes border cat screeching.
The first release, “Raincoat,” is a wonderfully enjoyable listen with its breezy tone and jazz-influenced music. The album takes a drastic turn as Sweet provides the listener with a new appreciation for classics. Kelly poorly covers Aerosmith’s “Dream On,” as her version is watered down and lacks the longing and wrenching emotion required. It is insulting to the beauty of the Steven Tyler song and a good reminder to never remake an original that still packs a punch.
“Caresse Sur L’Ocean,” either a short song or a long interlude, displays soaring high notes sung in French. Two more love ballads follow with “Crush” and “Ready For Love.” The lyrics are hopeful and accepting and are paired with good melodies. An Italian massacre occurs with a track originally written in English, entitled “Who Can I Believe In?” Marco Marinangelli, Italian lyricist for Josh Groban, translated the lyrics to Italian, re-titling the song “Giorno Dopo Giorno.” Unlike Groban, however, Sweet sings incompetently in the romance language. The instrumentation crescendos into what could be great sound, but the vocals and production falls flat.
“I Will Be Waiting” boasts a maturity far beyond Kelly’s years, and is especially impressive since she wrote the song at the age of 16. The music of Hans Zimmer, from the “The Gladiator” soundtrack, is set to lyrics with “Now We Are Free” and Sweet sings the peaceful tune with a joyful chorus in the Sanskrit language.
The most radio-friendly, pop song on the record is “How ‘Bout You,” a fun little track that can easily be played on AC stations.
The last cover is Elton John’s “Love Song,” followed by the sweet French and English lullaby that reveals a beautiful cohesiveness of voice and music.
The entire album can be considered a nice aural experience for a lazy afternoon. The trouble is that Sweet’s vocals throughout the entire collection are the same light tone that evokes sleep. The melody is not varied throughout the disc, either, making it a rather boring listen.
Still, her talent is apparent, and if given the chance and proper guidance, she will do well in future albums. Kelly’s debut album, “We Are One,” is an okay start to what could be a Sweet career.