Picks and Pans Review: Silver Lining
The glossy pop ballad still has some life in it when Bonnie Raitt is at the mike. That whiskey-cured, flame-broiled, love-scarred voice is enough to save a precariously pretty song from toppling into the caramel quicksand of many a Top 40 mainstay. Perhaps five tracks could settle comfortably into adult-oriented radio, from the finger-snapping if disposable pop of "I Can't Help You Now" to the moody title tune. The latter's lyrics about knockdowns and comebacks are cleverly vague enough to suit any mood, from paranoid to reverent. Its hypnotic drum loop suggests a menacing assembly line minting new enemies. "Wounded Heart," a woman's farewell to a nasty man, closes the album touchingly, leaving that voice alone with nothing but keyboards.
Much of the rest is spotty and aimless—that's what you get when 15 different songwriters pile onto the bus. There is redhead blues and so-so soul; one tune's guitar and rhythms even suggest a visit to Africa, or at least a visit to Circuit City to buy Paul Simon's Graceland. Too many of these tracks are no spicier than Minute Rice.
Bottom Line: On the Raitt track half the time