Album review

Belinda Carlisle 

The Collection

added: 6 Apr 2014 // release date: 17 Mar 2014 // label: Demon Music Group
reviewer: Paul Chapinal

Belinda Carlisle - The Collection - Printable version
A collection of Belinda Carlisle’s greatest hits is not that much of a surprise, or probably not that difficult to compile. During the late ‘80’s and 90’s she was a mainstay of the UK charts. A consummate pop/rock performer she has a formidable back-catalogue of songs, most of which still sound strong and not too dated. So a package was due at some point and complements the recent re-packaging of her albums. What makes this a bit more interesting is that there are two new songs.

The album grabs the listener with an opening salvo of (We Want) The Same Thing, Heaven is a Place on Earth and Live Your Life be Free. These big, bombastic, arguably over-produced songs are bona-fide pop classics. Taking a small step down there’s the likes of Leave a Light On and I Get Weak. Truth is there’s not much between any of these songs just that Heaven… and Life… are that little bit catchier.

But there’s a more to Ms Carlisle than bombast, just take a listen to the relatively primal Big Scary Animal and ever so slightly disconcerting Circle in the Sand. Put the CD on random play and you’re going to hit, well a hit. And that maybe the best way to listen to this album. Contrasting the galloping Do You Feel Like I Feel with the more Latin flavoured La Luna, or the open plains rockisms of Runaway Horses with the jarring strings of Summer Rain.

Of the new songs, Sun pops up halfway through, its disco/dance tempo could in the right hands be both a club and chart hit. Goodbye to Go closes the Collection in style being a big showstopper with orchestra, choir and Ms Carlisle at her most heartfelt.

There’s very little wrong with this compilation: it ticks all the boxes and sets Belinda Carlisle up nicely for her upcoming shows and gives notice that she’s still recording.

The Collection also comes with a DVD with the accompanying videos.

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4 stars

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