All You Gotta Do Is Take The NEXT STEP... | Posted March 15, 2009
Melissa Greene, one-fourth of Avalon's current lineup, released her solo album just a few days ago. Here, I will review this album in 3 sections so I can avoid the long length of some of my reviews :-) And so I don't copy the same review I wrote for JfH. Also, this is my PERSONAL opinion on the record, not a critical review.
THE GOOD: Melissa's voice is the biggest highlight of this album. She has a bit of country flare to her voice, which sounds pretty comparable to Carrie Underwood, especially in the country ballad, "Long Road To Forgiveness." But it also breezes through strong AC ballads (Wonder, Army), perky pop numbers (Next Step, Too Far), and piano-based songs (At Your Feet). Even the Stacie Orrico-influenced R&B track, "You Satisfy," is done with relative ease.
THE BAD: The music is not the most unique thing you've ever heard before. Not to mention, 6 of the 10 songs on here are slower songs, which doesn't provide a real mix. Her cover of "Revelation Song" falls flat, and although she has the strong vocals to carry it through, the musical arrangement is rather bland and anti-climactic compared to other versions.
SONG LOWDOWN: The title track is easily my favorite track here. It's a funky, jazzy, upbeat start to the album. The song reminds me a lot of Beyonce's "Crazy In Love," and the horn part in the chorus almost sounds identical to it. "Wonder" is a catchy, worshipful song. "At Your Feet" has nice lyrics but doesn't go anywhere musically. It's just Melissa and the piano the whole time. It would have benefited from a more orchestrated arrangement. "To Trust You" follows in the same foot (read her bio for her inspiration behind the song), but again doesn't do anything musically.
SUM-UP: Melissa's voice carries the album through beautifully. "Next Step" is at its best in the upbeat tracks, and it's too bad there weren't more of them. The album is marred by "too-many-ballads" syndrome. Tracks 8-10 (3 ballads in a row) are the worst tracks of the album, which makes the album end on a bad note.
SONG HIGHLIGHTS: Next Step, Wonder, Too Far, Imagine, Army