Talking Book

Studio Album by released in 2012
Talking Book's tracklist:
You Are The Sunshine Of My Life
Maybe Your Baby
You & I (We Can Conquer The World)
Tuesday Heartbreak
You've Got It Bad Girl
Big Brother
Blame It On The Sun
Lookin' For Another Pure Love
I Believe (When I Fall In Love It Will Be Forever)

Talking Book review

From small to the great

Macy Gray is on stage since 1999, and in contrast to her colleagues from the music shop who praise groups, songs, albums and performers, who had a significant impact on them in the beginning of their career, Natalie Renee McIntyre tells the world about that, having released 5 full, pretty successful albums. It is difficult to pinpoint the cause of this act. Here, we have situation when whether there is not enough material to write your own album, so you borrow already recognized classics, or the influence and the impact of the creation are so great so the singer just wants to scream about it all over the world. The girl like Macy Gray and her RnB and neo-soul styles insist to choose the second option. Music as a piece of art is very expressive itself, and among the huge number of genres these styles are the most emotional, heartfelt and "soulful" ones in popular music. As here we have jazz, blues and gospel as the basic components, justifiably we can expect spiritual rhythms, melody and soulful vocals from Talking Book, as well as from the other albums of the singer. Let's see if a new reading of Stevie Wonder's works repeats the fate of Trouble with Being Myself or On How Life Is. In any case, the new interpretation is always interesting and it is curious how Macy Gray rethought and reconsidered the old Talking Book.

Talking Book: a new interpretation of classics in Macy Gray style

In front of us lies the album that is considered to be the icon of 1972.Now it is presented in the sound of the 21st century and recorded by Macy Gray in honor of the 40th anniversary of Talking Book. Macy performs it in her bizarre and exceptional manner, forcing to re-look, re-listen and reconsider the past hits such as Superstition and You Are the Sunshine of My Life. Probably, it is blasphemy to compare cover album with the original, but willy-nilly you do it, and in this respect Maybe Your Baby sounds very amusing and quite on par with Mr. Wonder's version. Song dedicated to the flagellation and paranoid jealousy looks good with the chosen music and vocals by Macy – distorted keyboards, heart-rending vocals and heavy guitar melody convey at their best feelings that are not very chocolate. Particular attention should be paid to the album songs like You And I (We Can Conquer the World), where the voice of Macy shows us her sweeter side, here it is far more feminine, mysterious and due to the musical harmony the song appears in a new, unusual light. In Looking For Another Pure Love and Blame It On The Sun the singer decided to confront that cozy and comfortable atmosphere that was made for us by Stevie back in 1972, she intentionally creates a kind of aura around the listener that is quite different from the original, perhaps it sounds better. The last I Believe (When I Fall in Love It Will Be Forever) is a hymn to the senses as Macy's soul overflows with them and it affects the song, Gray goes to the upper octave of her voice, practically screams and being in this avalanche of surging feelings she finishes her love letter to Stevie Wonder.

As time goes by, the old heroes go, new ones appear

In general, reading and reinterpretation of the Talking Book is made in concepts and images that are an integral part of Macy Gray. Here we have her heart-rending voice, excessive emotionality, melodiousness and heartfelt concern. Difficult to say that in the end the cover album appeared better than the original, well at least it is on par. Mr. Wonder's skill is undeniable and generally accepted, and it would be folly try to challenge the album that for 40 years sounds in the minds of millions, and which has more than one generation of fans. Macy Gray wanted to do a tribute to the old man Stevie and she did it. This album is not an act of competition or desire to take the garland from the original; it is just a thank you and a deep bow in front of the creation of the person who laid the roots of soul style in America. As to the Macy Gray, it's time to finish with covers and produce her own creations, so that in ten or twenty years some singer will do the covers on her works. Well, now it seems that she takes her time to rest before releasing something grand, or at least, we hope for that. Well, according to the Talking Book, Macy Gray still has a lot of potential. She is still able to impress, experiment, empathize and sympathize with her unique, unordinary for the others, but somehow very charming manner.

Artem Pronichev (19.11.2012)
Rate review4.12
Total votes - 8

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