Despite her limited vocals Whiney Houston is back!
In comparison to her last album Houston shows growth, quality and passion in which I would dub comeback worthy. Houston’s first single “Million Dollar Bill” which was written and produced by Alicia Keys was chosen to be the first single for a reason. Its old school upbeat melody and catchy chorus will have you instantly rocking from side to side singing “Oh, oh, oh, oh” along side Houston. Another instant head bopping song on the album is “Worth It.”
It was written by famed lyricist Jonta Austin and it’s definitely worth listening to. Other second tier favorites are “Call You Tonight” and “I Got You.” She does however try to shake up her album with a disco inspired rendition of Leon Russell’s 1970s hit “A Song for You.”
On the album Houston gravitates towards songs that reflect some of her most personal struggles during time away from the music industry. “Nothin’ But Love” will leave you saying you have nothing but love for this song. In “Salute” Houston sings about how she never left and has always been here.
“I didn’t know my own strength, and I crashed down, and I tumbled, but I did not crumble,” are just a few proclamations Whitney Houston makes on her new album “I Look to You” which is slated to be her come back album after being on a seven-year hiatus. Houston’s album consists of 14 tracks featuring an array of A-list writers and producers including Alicia Keys, R. Kelly, Diane Warren, Swizz Beatz, Jonta Austin and Akon. Houston co-wrote two of the songs on her album.
“I Look to You” was originally slated to be released on Sept. 1. The release date was pushed up to Aug. 31 due to an overwhelming amount of internet buzz and rave reviews from Rolling Stones, Billboard, Entertainment Weekly and industry power players.
Billboard has projected that the long-awaited album will debut at No.1 on the Billboard 200 chart with estimated album sells upward of 200,000 copies.
The last time Whitney Houston had a number one album was in 1990 when “I’m Your Baby Tonight” debuted at number one that year.
Houston’s 2002 “Just Whitney” album had promise but was overshadowed with drug allegations, her bizarre behavior on her reality show and unlawful antics from her husband Bobby Brown.
Despite rave reviews and onlookers calling it a comeback album the range and caliber of her former voice has clearly deteriorated from speculated drug abuse.
The 11 songs on the album were carefully selected and produced to fit her new voice. Long time friend, mentor and guardian angel Clive Davis did an excellent job in song selection for Houston’s album. He picked the right combination of songs made for a new Whitney’s latest voice and style.
Houston’s voice, now limited will not allow her to sing an emotionally wrenching ballad as “I Will Always Love You,” or a powerhouse vocal as “Queen of The Night” from her Bodyguard era.
Of the two ballad-like songs, “I Look to You” is the only one worth listening to. Everyone loves a song that has a positive message but “I Didn’t Know My Own Strength,” is very much monotone and mundane from beginning to end. The lyrics are well written and reflect Houston’s struggle but it lacks pizzazz.
If you are looking for the old Whitney Houston unfortunately you will be disappointed. But if you are looking for the new Whitney then you’ll be pleased. It is good to see that Houston is moving forward with her life and isn’t “holding on to pain, because that’s not what [her] life is about.”