There can't be more than a handful of discs better than We Are One for snuggling up to a loved one or for that three in the morning wind down. Blessed with a beautiful voice made for soft emotional ballads, Kelly Sweet hits notes heretofore saved for the likes of Mariah Carey or Enya or Celine Dion or even Barbra Streisand in her better and softer moments. Thanks to an incredible production job by Mark Portmann, who had a hand in writing many of the songs, the vocal pyrotechnics which Ms. Sweet could probably handle well are left by the wayside for the musical highs, thank the gods, and they come one after the other.
From the absolutely stunning We Are One through the light jazzy tones of Raincoat to an incredible version of the Jewish anthem Now We Are Free, Sweet takes us on an emotional ride right up there with the best. As her voice soars in tandem with the topnotch orchestral arrangements, so do we soar, carefree one moment, happy the next, and so in love the next. Even the joyful and upbeat How 'Bout You is more emotional than most songs out there, the voice taking a soft rocker out of the rock genome.
As if the voice and production are not enough, they throw in the perfect oddities—a heartrending ballad version of Aerosmith's Dream On (handled exquisitely and well worth hearing), a floating and spacey but all too short Caresse sur l'Ocean which glides between Enya and aria, the Italian love song Giorno Dopo Giorno (in Italian—this will make you understand why it is the language of love), and the aforementioned Now We Are Free—all obviously carefully chosen and laid out in a sequence which makes this album that much better.
This is the kind of album which makes believers of us all, the album so well performed with songs so well crafted and produced so well that it transcends genre. This is the album us rockers can bring home to our wives and girlfriends to prove that we, too, have hearts, in spite of the music we force feed them at other times. It's a perfect album for Valentine's Day or just for that romantic evening. Just turn the lights down low and put this on—the volume doesn't matter. If they don't hear it, they're the ones without hearts.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2007, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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