Picks and Pans Review: Real Love
Anyone searching for Parton's country roots on this album will be hard put to come up with much more than a tendril. This is straight-ahead, mainstream pop. It also happens to be Grade A straight-ahead, mainstream pop. Parton's more vulnerable, emotional side—which has appeared so often in the past from her own Coat of Many Colors to her reprise of Save the Last Dance for Me—never shows up here, yet she does a bang-up job with such nifty romps as Tie Our Love (In a Double Knot) and with two of her own tunes, I Can't Be True, a rockabilly bouncer that sounds like something Elvis might have done, and the delightfully cynical I Hope You're Never Happy' ("with anybody but me"). The romantic duet with Kenny Rogers, Real Love, is innocuous at best, and the album doesn't really contain any of the softening ballads Parton usually includes to offset her more aggressive, up-tempo self. But this remains a sprightly, if occasionally glib, piece of entertainment. (RCA)
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