Picks and Pans Review: Falling into You
Dion's latest album starts with a bang. Literally. "It's All Coming Back to Me Now" blasts off the CD with a booming piano chord followed by seven minutes of Wagnerian melodrama, Dion's crystalline soprano swelling and trembling with operatic abandon worthy of the Ring cycle's immolation scene.
Dion has a predilection for Olympian thrills. She knocks herself out trying to match the classic bombast that Eric Carmen dished out on "All By Myself" and Tina Turner laid down on "River Deep—Mountain High." Even if Dion doesn't ignite the latter as fiercely as Turner did in her 1966 version, neither cover leaves one longing for the original.
The real triumph, though, is the way Dion's dewy-voiced conviction makes hyperbole like "I will lay down my life if that's what you need" sound like the earnest truth. That's what separates her from Whitney Houston, her frosty soulmate in over-the-top balladeering. While an ice queen like Houston will rarely risk sounding merely human, Dion, bless her lovestruck heart, tosses, turns and melts in the heat of passion. (550 Music/Epic)
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