The Reigning Queen of Country Digs Deep Into Her Heart and Soul.
It can be a bit of a slog some weeks listening to music that very few others will ever hear then writing glowing prose that never gets re-promoted by lazy PR’S and Record Labels……some artists too btw; then there is always a little ray of light like when an artist takes the time to thank us personally or, as happened earlier this year a pretty damn big PR Company in London Town got in touch offering an album because the guitarist was a fan of the site!
Their latest offering is this …..the fifth album in 24 years for legendary Country Queen Miss Shania Twain!
I have to confess……hang on, why should it be a ‘confession’ that we actually own Shania’s first three albums…..alongside 70 million other people it has to be said; and I guess that there’s hardly a minute in every 24 hours that one of her songs isn’t being played on a radio show somewhere in the Western World…..that’s how BIG Shania Twain is.
So…..I guess the Music Industry isn’t waiting with baited breath for my thoughts on an album with millions of pre-sales already in the bank.
But here goes…….
NOW kicks off, and that’s as good a description as any with the awesome Swinging With My Eyes Closed. Already a hit single; this has a sort of strange reggaeish lilt to the melody (which Mrs Magpie can’t here btw) but it’s all about Shania’s voice; isn’t it? And she sure doesn’t disappoint with a classy song destined to become a fan favourite every night.
It was only after reading her bio that I remembered that the sassy Canadian had actually retired once because of ‘vocal problems’ …..not that you would know it when she belts out the likes of You Can’t Buy Love and Life’s About To Get Good; as well if not better than singers half her age.
One of the questions always raised is ‘is Shania Twain’ Country? Of course she is! Yes, these songs have huge productions to them; but listen to Who’s Going To Be Your Girl? or We’ve Got Something They Haven’t and you will not just hear a banjo and a Twangtastic guitar but hear a heartbroken theme that started for me with Tammy and Dolly in the 60’s and still burns brightly in 2017 with Shania Twain.
In a week that I spent a lot of time listening to Whitney Rose’s new Countrypolitan album; it’s easy for me to compare it to this beauty……they are completely different but very similar at their core…….a strong woman writing and singing about their life; good bits and lots of bad bits too.
The album closes with Soldier, a beautiful ballad that will break hearts and make others swell with pride as it straddles the fence between mawkish and venerable with grace; and will be sung amid thousands of flickering mobile-phones at concerts and
When it comes to the RMHQ ‘Favourite Track’ bizarrely both Mrs. Magpie (who has seconded this disc) both agree that it has to be Light of My Life; a lovely, breathy acoustic led ballad, in the mode of Dusty Springfield rather than the Country Queens you would normally think of.
While still very commercial but without any bombastic Pop-Country songs we would normally associate with Shania Twain; NOW is very intimate and even vulnerable at times and sounds like a woman coming to terms with her life and age, so with that in mind; it will sell in bucket loads to women of the same ‘certain age’ who feel exactly the same way; but can’t put those feelings into words themselves.
Released September 29th 2017