Will Young’s third CD Keep On continues the pop sound mixed with some light blues and jazz elements that he introduced in Friday’s Child. However, Keep On is so sleek and overproduced that it’s like some shiny brand new Fomika table, so clean and polished until it has virtually no character of its own and it slips too easily into background music territory.
Musically, tracks like Ain’t Such a Bad Place to Be, Keep On, and Think It Over are great catchy tracks with sophisticated and even sexy grooves. Unfortunately, the vocals feel a little too controlled – there is none of the playful tone that make those songs really fun to listen to. Even haunting ballads like All Time Love and Who Am I come off as more overproduced than heartfelt.
That’s not to say that this CD is a dud, far from it. If Will Young wants to distance himself from the schmaltzy goo that was his Pop Idol debut, he’s doing a splendid job. There is enough musical elements in every song to suggest that Will Young does have input in the production, being that there is a distinct sound that is his despite the assortment of people working on the CD. Compared to Friday’s Child, however, Keep On runs the risk of being too clean, too careful, and too restrained to the point that it is too easy to forget that the CD is playing while I go about doing other things in the house.