Picks and Pans Review: All That Matters
Just think: if scientists could clone Michael Bolton, our most breathless male romantic balladeer, he could star in the first Promise Keepers TV show: Men Behaving Unbelievably Well. A man who has never met an emotion he's afraid to express, Bolton lets out such a love-sotted sigh midway through this hour-long CD that you know he always picks up his socks and never belches at the dinner table. Alas, to love Bolton in turn means putting up with endless lyric clichés ("Believe what we feel, keep it real") and impressive, but ultimately empty, vocal gymnastics. Coauthor of 10 of the 13 songs here, Bolton begins each tune sparingly with an aching vocal that builds to a gooey crescendo. When it's all over, you're thankful he's the one and only. (Columbia)
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