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Exhale In Waiting
on November 30, 2013
Waiting to Exhale soundtrack is unique in that it consists of African American female R&B artists only. All songs were written and produced by Babyface, except for "My Funny Valentine".
Babyface's ability as composer and producer, created a suite of songs that evoke women's emotional and sexual fantasies with a directness the sultriest female singers in current rhythm-and-blues with his tender, gently pulsating songs. He uses understatement for seduction. The album, paid more attention to female vocalists and their performances than lyrics or production.
The dynamic vocalist that is Chante Moore sails through the passionate jazzy "Wey U".
"Exhale (Shoop Shoop)", performed by Whitney Houston, was released as the lead single from the soundtrack. It is surprisingly understated shuffle-ballad with soul and far more interesting vocal colors than all the relentless shrieking can provide. But it is lyrically lacking too often settling for cliches instead of specifics, and the arrangements is swathed in the synthesized surroundings. In achieving a dignified restraint, Babyface left out the life.
The album's second single, "Sittin' Up in My Room" by Brandy, showcased Babyface's production, funky-yet-restrained background track is the real star of this jam. Using a pleasant mixture of plunking bass and synthesizer chords, the song proves that he has a grabbag of styles in his arsenal.
"Not Gon' Cry" by Mary J. Blige was released as the third single was an anthem for many women. Babyface's music and lyrics suggest a woman barely holding back a swelling flood of anger and heartache, and Ms. Blige's vocal captures the agitation and the restraint. Mary J. Blige staked a claim as the new diva on in this neighborhood with a career defining performance on the song.
The fourth single from the soundtrack, "Count on Me" performed by Whitney Houston and CeCe Winans, was "a buddy song for the diva generation", though Winans makes a strong impression that those who had yet to hear her fine recordings would yearn to hear more.
The album's fifth single, "Let It Flow" by Toni Braxton sings the words with a choked intensity, her dark, grainy contralto conveying a potent mixture of fury and sensuality.
"It Hurts Like Hell" by Aretha Franklin was released as the sixth single doesn't impact as some of the album's other tracks. Ms. Franklin doesn't rises to heights of letting-it-all-out pop-gospel anguish that she has excellently reached before.
"Why Does It Hurt So Bad" by Whitney Houston became the seventh and final single to be released off the album. "Houston holds her own, particularly on this, with its balance of pop zip and soulful melancholy on this heartbreak ballad."
Also of note "My Funny Valentine" by Chaka Khan and "Kissing You" by Faith Evans the B-side tag along to her single "Ain't Nobody".