Urban Contemporary, 2000
No matter what she is doing in her private life nowadays or how her voice seems to have gone flatter for the worse, Whitney Houston’s legacy of music is still something to be in awe of. And it’s about time someone come up with a greatest hit compilation. After all, Whitney Houston’s power ballads such as I Will Always Love You, Where Do Broken Hearts Go?, Greatest Love of All, All the Man That I Need, and Saving All My Love for You still send chills up my spine.
And Whitney can groove too. Heartbreak Hotel, a powerful triumvirate of a ballad featuring splendid harmonies by Faith Evans and Kelly Price is a smooth, laid-back affair perfect for romantic passions, despite the subject of the song. And she can bring the house down in Chaka Khan’s I’m Every Woman. Who can forget I Wanna Dance With Somebody? Now that’s a classic, bad hairstyle and all. And don’t forget the magnificent My Love is Your Love, truly the true Y2K celebration song if you ask me. And there’s no denying the James Bond-esque erotic funk of I’m Your Baby Tonight. For a heavy stampede of adrenaline, here comes Queen of the Night.
Unfortunately, in an attempt to make Whitney Houston cool and hip, some bozos thought it would be great to remix the tunes. How awful can one get? The I’m Every Woman here is awful, while many of the remixes drown the songs in heavy bass lines and stomping bits, thus diluting every inch of uniqueness that separate each song from the other.
And as for new songs, they’re passable. Just. Her duet with Enrique Iglesias, Can I Have This Kiss Forever is bland and tired. It is also embarrassing because her Spanish is truly awful. Likewise, in If I Tell You That, I can’t tell her apart from George Michael, the latter trying too hard to out-dramatize Houston in the vocal theatrics department. Same Script, Different Cast, her duet with Deborah Cox, is the best of the lot, although it’s a tired R&B affair.
What are they thinking? They’ve rendered Ms Houston into yet another one of those faceless, anonymous (and bland) R&B acts around the charts nowadays. And it’s a shame, because her old stuff can still put to shame most of the tunes released by the current crop of R&B divas.