Reviewed by Helen Whitall
'Sparkle' is the latest from Jasmine, a Latin pop singer based in Michigan. On first listen this seems to be just another sugary confection, but it turns out to have a surprising amount of substance. The album kicks off with the slightly electronic dance-pop title track, extremely catchy with its "wo-oh oh-oh" chorus. "Heard About You" looks at God's faithfulness in the past and states her faith in that trustworthiness, before moving into the slower ballad "Priority", a sweet song about putting God first. "Daddy's Little Girl" has an intriguing flavour; ambiguous about whether she is singing about her father or her Father in Haven, she draws a nice parallel between the two, and as a song to her dad it is certainly very touching. "Let 'Em Know" is all about being yourself and doing your best, and features the wonderful lyric "keep your head up even when you're fed up." With strumming guitars and clapping, the vulnerable "One Word" tries the folky pop sound, but this is mellowed out by background strings. "What I Believe" and "Walk It Like You Talk It" take the same theme of living out your faith in everyday life outside the walls of the church, but "What I Believe" is a slower song, a layer of cake between the upbeat icing of adjacent tracks. The final track, "Bought By Blood" should be an epic; however the accompaniment just doesn't stand out quite as strongly as her vocals, making this sound a rather thin base for the rest of the album to stand on. If I have one criticism of this album, it is that in places the lyrics don't scan too well with ttrackshe tunes. However, this is an infectious listen; you'll want to come back for a second slice. Three tracks have made it to the CR playlist...what further recommendation do you want?
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