Charice – Charice

September 28, 2010 at 8:01 PM | Posted in Charice | Leave a comment

ALBUM REVIEW
Charice – Charice

1. Pyramid (feat. Iyaz)
2. Reset
3. In This Song
4. Nobody’s Singin’ To Me
5. Thank You
6. I Love You
7. In Love So Deep
8. All That I Need To Survive
9. Nothing
10. The Truth Is
11. I Did It For You (feat. Drew Ryan Scott)
12. Note To God

♦ ♦ ♦

Charice is the international self-titled debut album (and third overall release) by Fillipina singer Charice Pempengco. This second self-titled album was released on May 11, 2010 under Reprise Records. It debuted at number-eight on the Billboard 200, making Charice the first Asian artist to reach the Top 10 on the chart solo.

I fell in love with Pyramid (feat. Iyaz) since the first time I heard it, and I immediately wanted to know who this Charice girl is. Then I read she just turned 18, and I couldn’t believe my ears and eyes. Here is an R&B singer with the voice of a grownup and an even more mature vocal range! Accompanied by a smooth beat with a lot of bass and handclaps, strings and a piano Charice hits high notes that give me goosebumps all over, and Iyaz isn’t bad either. Good album opener, it really makes you wonder what she’ll have in store.

Reset is a lighter song, though the percussion is a little more extensive. It doesn’t let me down after the spectacular opening track, and Charice again sounds like she’s in her mid-twenties or something. I like her Fillipino lyrics in the bridge, it’s actually a really pretty language. Again, this song is mainly based on heavy R&B beats, a piano and strings. Could easily be released as a single.

The next song opens with a beautiful piano melody, and the lower key in the verse gives it just a little hince of a power ballad. In This Song is the first real ballad on this album, and it really is a power ballad à la Leona Lewis, just as I expected. The piano gets feedback from a lot of dramatic and bombastic strings arrangements, guitars and HUGE vocals by Charice. If Pyramid didn’t prove what she’s capable of, then this song definitely will!

The strings and beat for Nobody’s Singin’ To Me captured my attention from the start, and the melody isn’t bad either. Actually, it’s pretty good because it doesn’t sound like other tracks up until now. The tricky thing about R&B albums is that some songs easily sound alike, so I’m keeping my ears open. Again, Charice is giving me a lot of vocal acrobatics against a background of very heavy and pumping percussion, strings and a piano. Pretty decent track, I’ll bet no one ever falls asleep to this one.

Thank You is another ballad, but this time I think she’s gonna keep everything a little simpeler and less dramatic. The beat consist mostly of bass, handclaps and high-hat, lighter strings and even some synths this time! The lyrics are very recognizeable for, I think, everyone, and finally there’s a song with this name that hasn’t got all cheesy lyrics. Charice’s adlibbing in this song is the best adlibbing section on the entire album by far, love it!

Charice’s first note in I Love You was a pretty high and loud one, so that was pretty scary… It’s like *BOOM*: there she is! This song is more mid-tempo, and one of the better tracks on this album, mostly because of the catchy chorus (with backup singers!). The melody is very likeable and the beats and synths are very pleasant to listen to. I think this is one of my favourite songs on the album, it’s so different from the rest and so uplifting!

For the first time, and electric guitar is included in a song, so In Love So Deep immediately sounds a little more aggressive than the other songs on this album. But although the guitars are very dominant in this song (and the percussion as well), the song isn’t heavy at all. I wonder if Charice constantly thought of proving herself as an artist with this album, because she hasn’t given ONE simple vocal performance up until now. Not that I really mind… I mean… will the real Whitney Houston please stand up?

All I Need To Survive then is like a gift from heaven with vulnerability all over and finally that simple vocal performance I asked for. The guitar introduction was very fitting, and the strings again added a little drama to the song. Overall, this song has such a heartwarming and wonderfully beautiful melody, especially in the chorus. Her vocals get high-pitched again during the last choruses, but it suits the song so it’s okay with me!

One of the few real uptempo tracks is Nothing, a track influenced by synths and fast beats, so it has some pop elements as well. So it’s very nice to see even Charice dares to variate a little on her first mainstream album. Charice controls her good vocals very well this time so they fit the genre a little more, but the rest of the song doesn’t appeal to me like all the previous tracks. Least favourite until now.

The introduction for The Truth Is reminds me of something, but I just don’t know what. Maybe it’s a cheesy way to open a song, maybe it’s a cover, I guess I’ll never know. I have to admit I love Charice’s vocals and what she can do with them in a song, but after ten songs everything will get too much and they just don’t stand out anymore (how big is the content of her lungs? o.O). Another random ballad, nothing more to say about it.

I got the Drew Ryan Scott version of I Did It For You, and it seems he has some pretty vocals as well so Charice has to share the stage again, more than like she did with Iyaz. Drew gets an entire verse and chorus for himself, but he sings ‘you did it for me‘. It’s good he’s featured, or else the song would probably pass without me noticing it. The whole ‘featured artist’ thing makes this song more interesting (hmm… maybe the good beats and electric guitar riffs add a little spice as well…).

So apparently Note To God is a cover of the exact same song by American singer JoJo, and I can easily imagine her singing this. The track is filled with emotions, mostly because it’s a prayer song, and for that reason a ballad. Percussion and strings work together on giving this song extra pathos and dynamics, and it’s a good way of ending this album. The song is very interesting, and the choir at the end of the song is enchanting… And what kind of note… was THAT??? She ends like whaaaaaah o.O

Charice prepared the world for a new star in town! All of her songs show what a great perfomer she is, with vocals that surpass her age, music that appeals and… I just don’t even have the right words for it. She’s one of the few R&B artist that puts a little variation in her music, adds other instruments to her music to give tracks just that little extra to them and can hits high notes (live as well!) without cracking up. Whitney Houston had a meltdown, as we all know, but who did we get in return? Yes, this beautiful and talented Fillipina singer! I think we’re gonna hear much more from this girl, and a sophomore album is guaranteed!

Favorite tracks: Pyramid (feat. Iyaz) | Reset | In This Song | I Love You | All I Need To Survive | Note To God

OVERALL RATING

4½ stars

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