7 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Get back to the Breakaway/My Dec sound Kelly,
This review is from: Stronger (MP3 Music)
Bring back the crunch guitar it suits your voice so well. Kelly, I believe you are a VOCAL HURRICANE, I sincerely think you are probably the greatest female vocalist on the scene today (and I'm old), lol, however you also need a good foundation to display your wares and sadly the limp dance beat backgrounds simply do NOT get the job done. A great voice will get you far but a great band will get you to the finish line. Tanya Tucker is the greatest female singer in history though;)
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Showing 1-10 of 14 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Oct 24, 2011 10:56:55 AM PDT
It's interesting, I'd never thought about the background music until you mentioned it. It's exactly as you said it was. There just doesn't seem to be much depth to it to compliment her vocals. Although it could partly be due to the fact that I'm listening to the samples on my MacBook Pro....not exactly concert hall sound! LOL! ;) However, I doubt that great speakers would make much of a difference.
In reply to an earlier post on Oct 24, 2011 12:03:12 PM PDT
William Smith says:
Yea, it's not your set up. The sound is very dance/synth-based which simply doesn't allow for much depth as you said. Her vocals are still in there punching away but with nothing there to back her up it falls short..
In reply to an earlier post on Oct 24, 2011 2:17:23 PM PDT
"synth" is the term i would use too...better yet....."tinny" sounding. I do love her voice, and at $4.99 I may get it anyway, but it will be interesting to see how the next album sounds.
Posted on Oct 24, 2011 3:50:24 PM PDT
If you ask me, these are wonderful backing tracks. Listen closely.
In reply to an earlier post on Oct 24, 2011 4:03:40 PM PDT
Please don't take this the wrong way, but I could respond with "Well, I didn't ask you", but I won't. ;) I listened just fine and bought the album because her voice is superb and I enjoy it. I don't need to listen any more closely to make it sound any different.
have a great day! :)
Posted on Oct 24, 2011 7:20:58 PM PDT
I wouldn't expect another My December from Kelly pretty much ever. At least, not while she's signed to a big label. That said, the sound of her previous releases is more rock with heavier guitars and a more straightforward rock vocal style. This release, Stronger, is unfortunately lots of synth and less guitars with a more R&B-pop vocal sound. I fully understand why, too. Just listen to Lady Gaga and Britney. They both follow this formula. That said, Kelly needs to blaze her own path rather than following the paths of others. This sound works, but it sounds more like Miss Independent and less like Breakaway. Kelly definitely shows her vocal diversity on this release, though, as she uses her vocals to sound less Rock and more R&B-Pop. I'm guessing the sound style change was more of a label / producer decision than hers because it's a pretty drastic genre change from the last two releases.
In reply to an earlier post on Oct 27, 2011 3:20:58 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 27, 2011 3:22:01 PM PDT
D. J. Cook says:
It's called growing as an artist. Making music that sounds like Breakaway was fine five years ago, hearing the same thing now would not be good. No wonder so many artists are afraid to try and work outside the box, people hear the slightest bit of change and they don't know how to react since it's not the status quo they are used to.
Also, D. Clark, had you responded with "Well, I didn't ask you", one could come right back with "Well, why then did you type out a review for the public to see?". You had no problem with William Smith's response, of course that's only because that is the response you wanted instead of getting the truth.
In reply to an earlier post on Oct 28, 2011 12:21:47 AM PDT
Growing as an artist is great so long as the sound you're achieving is something new. Unfortunately, the sameness from track to track on Stronger is very apparent and doesn't indicate growth. While it may not sound like Breakaway or My December, it's definitely not unique either. At least Breakaway had a unique quality and feel. Stronger feels rehashed. Worse, the backing instrumental tracks are definitely not new and are of shallow quality with little sound depth. The sound achieved on Stronger probably would have worked better 5 years ago right after Thankful and before Breakaway. This CD, however, is what I call 'Safe Pop'. That is, there are no surprises, there's no experimentation and shallow lyrics. The sound is produced to be commercially viable to be sure and intended for the least diverse pop audience. Production wise, it's not bad. Content wise, it's too standard and straightforward and layered vocals are overdone. Definitely not a classic by any stretch. In other words, don't expect to hear any of these tracks on the radio even 5 years from now. At least Lady Gaga throws in a surprise or two with every release.
If you want to grow as an artist, you write and produce songs that show case your abilities. She's a great singer, but putting it on hollow safe pop does not indicate growth. Change yes, growth no. My December was at least an attempt to do something different, but the label balked. There are plenty of labels that would have her as an artist and let her do her own thing. She doesn't need to hide her vocals behind safe pop that's mostly overproduced.
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 3, 2011 3:53:16 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Nov 3, 2011 3:59:04 PM PDT
Hollow safe pop? Wow, that's pretty much anything top 40, but Kelly Clarkson.
I'd say STRONGER is top of the line pop music. It's just as solid as the last three Clarkson albums.
Kelly thinks it's her best, some critics and fans are thinking it's her best. So, we'll just see where it lands.
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 4, 2011 12:43:32 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Nov 4, 2011 12:44:26 AM PDT
Your comment just reiterates that people have become conditioned to this type of repetitive hollow sound. A sound that is best relegated to grocery store shopping and background music during a night out. A sound that didn't really exist until ProTools came into existance. During the 70s, pop was more rock than pop and sounded nothing like this. Today, it's a bunch of chopped up repetitive vocal overlays and digital effects. This is not music that you want to spend time focusing on critically. It's unfortunate because Kelly Clarkson has incredibly diverse vocal abilities and an amazing voice. She's able to jump from one genre to the next with ease. My December proves she's a capable songwriter and singer.
I'm not saying the sound on Stronger is bad. I'm saying it's just standard. There's nothing surprising. The best song on this CD musically is the Avril-like 'I Forgive You'. In fact, I'd love to actually hear Avril sing this song. Ironically, the vocal chorus overlays on 'I Forgive You' are actually the worst on the CD sounding completely unnatural and odd. There is no doubt that Kelly can sing. She just needs material that makes her unique and, at the same time, completely showcases her vocal abilities and range. Basically, these songs could have been given to pretty much any pop artist. She needs songs completely unique that define her and that she defines vocally and that push her to the next level as an artist. Songs, for example, like what Poker Face did for Gaga. Create a sound that's both unique musically and lyrics that define her as unique. She also doesn't need to become Gaga to do this. She just needs better material.
Oh, and of course she's going to say it's her best. She's the biggest promotional tool she has to get the CD to sell. She can't come out and say she hates it, at least not if she wants to sell any copies.