Paul Johnson - Personal

Published Tuesday 5th December 2006
Paul Johnson - Personal
Paul Johnson - Personal

RATING 7 7 7 7 7 7 7
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 18781-10650
LABEL: CBS 4632842

Reviewed by Mike Rimmer

After making a little bit of a mark with his self-titled debut album, in 1989 CBS gave the British soul singer another bite of the apple with a follow up. The silky voiced Johnson was reunited with producer Junior Giscombe but this time, producers Steve Jolley and Tony Swain were invited to the party. The pair had helped artists like Imagination, Spandau Ballet and Alsion Moyet have some of their hugest hits. The magic failed to work on Johnson however and his single here "No More Tomorrows" simply sounded like a song Alison Moyet might have rejected. Although in the sleevenotes Johnson claims these are some of his most personal songs, this feels even more anonymous than the debut and seems incapable of touching the listener emotionally which is a big minus when it comes to R&B. It's all smoothly performed and Johnson's falsetto voice is sublime but somehow the singer is dogged by a lack of personality that also affected his live performances - all excellently presented at the time but ultimately failing to grab the audience. And that's the problem with this album, it suffers from being a little nondescript. "Who Shot Cupid?" is trying to be funky, clever and dramatic but doesn't really cut it. There are a couple of rays of sunshine in the second half of the album so "Not Enough Love In The World", a cover of a Don Henley song, works well and the closing ballad "Me Oh My" repeats the formula of the debut with equal aplomb. Overall it's slickly produced and all the pieces are fitted nicely together but someone forgot to include any true emotional connections with the listening audience. The album subsequently failed to make an impact and Johnson was soon dropped. I'm pretty sure Paul has recorded other music since this release but I've not been able to track anything down. I've always been a fan of the man so the fruitless search has been disappointing.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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Reader Comments

Posted by Steve Smith @ 11:17 on Jan 27 2007

Hi Mike,
On the Album, Pauls Paradise Buddys, Bobby Clarke and Phil Edwards are mentioned.

Whatever became of them?


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