How can someone collaborate with Ladysmith Black Mamboza on the title track and still comes off as dull as dishwater? Ask The Corrs. Their latest CD Borrowed Heaven is stripped of everything that makes them stand out in a sea of lackluster, nondescript adult contemporary pop acts. The violins are muted, the pipes are silenced, and only Jim Corr, who has always been complaining that he’s the left out member of the group, is happy as he gets to use the electric guitar all the time. So, without the light Celtic influences that mark the music of their first few CDs, what is left to care about The Corrs? Listening to Borrowed Heaven, I really have no idea.
None of the tracks here is particularly bad, but none actually comes to life either. Some tracks like Summer Sunshine nearly has a hook right, but somehow the song always comes off as missing that one great hook or chorus that will engage my attention. These songs just float around like bubbles that pop away when come into contact with any object in the room. The track Time Enough for Tears stands out though only in how awkward it sounds. The Bono co-penned track is heavy with jazzy influences, but the jazz sound is not something that Andrea Corr’s pleasant but lightweight voice can pull off well.
Only on the closing instrumental track Silver Strand do the old The Corrs make an appearance. Hi, violins, hello, flute, but since this track closes the CD, it feels like a goodbye from the old The Corrs as well. There’s nothing wrong in change, of course, but this change is like ditching the only thing that separates The Corrs from being completely bland and jumping straight into the pool of blah. Let’s just hope that they don’t drown from the experience.