the CD review.
Beverley Knight Voice (Parlophone) Rating **
THE Beverley Knight compilation is not too bad but, while listening to it, you can't help but notice one thing u she can't help but play on the safe side.
Shoulda Woulda Coulda, as well as being grammatically incorrect, was a great hit. But Knight has a better voice than a lot of this material gives her credit for. One of the bonus tracks, a cover of Robbie Williams's Angels, is also highly misguided as it is nothing more than a karaoke hit in anyone's hands but his.
Morrissey Ringleader of the Tormentors (Attack) Rating ****
IT IS with great flair and style that Morrissey opens his latest album. I Will See You In Far Off Places could sound like it came from his very best period with The Smiths. And, while he could never manage to maintain that momentum, this is still a brilliant album. He seems to have stepped away from his miserable old man routine and return to a slightly more playful role. He takes topics like life and sex and manages to infuse them with a deadpan irony which comes with a refreshing ease from a man who has obviously been there and done that many times before.
Gnarls Barkley Crazy (Downtown) Rating ****
AS SINGLES go, this is one of the most important of the year. Vocalist Cee-Lo and Gorillaz producer Danger Mouse have collaborated on this song as an introduction to the forthcoming LP St Elsewhere. With its haunting American South vocals, it sounds like 1950s blues put through a modern mixer. Already played just about everywhere, you can guarantee that, come the end of the year, you will be so thoroughly sick of it. Butn at least, unlike many songs that achieve such prominence, this has verve, style and a genuinely different approach.
Prince 3121 (Universal) Rating ***
THERE is no doubt that Prince is brilliant at what he does. He has been making great disco music since the '80s without putting too many feet wrong. This is nothing new from him, but that doesn't alter it still being brilliant. What is less so is the song Lolita, which leaves a little too much of a bad taste in the mouth, to be anything other than a little uncomfortable. So this is good, not spectacular, and certainly not one to win any new fans, but there is something endearing about the little fella busily throwing out these little works of passion.