STYLE: MOR / Soft Pop RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 11035-21605 LABEL: Manna CD040 FORMAT: CD Album
Reviewed by Tony Cummings
News of the conversion to Christianity of the veteran pop star is heart-warming and Helen's whole hearted step into the world of church hall ministry to be applauded. It's a shame therefore that her gospel debut couldn't have been a considerably better album. Decades have passed since those quintessential early 60s British pop hits like "Walking Back To Happiness" and that husky contralto, though losing none of its rich texture has had to cope with so many years of third rate cabaret-circuit accompaniments that it can easily slip into mannered theatricality. It does on occasions here, not helped by a set of arrangements which often smack more of chicken-in-the-basket supper clubs than the cutting edge of popular music. Songs are erratic, mainly cover-versions of US material and though the Jewish praise idea is a brave attempt, and the Gary Dunham title track is a lovely ballad, this is an album which too often meanders into musical mediocrity.
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