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    Seal 2 ( 1991 )
    The Beginning / Deep Water / Crazy / Killer / Whirlpool / Future Love Paradise / Wild / Show Me / Violet

    At a certain point in time, Trevor Horn productions went from being innovative to being innovative and hugely sick inducing. His productions went from being state of the art, to state of the art married to sickly smooth sheen, so polished and 'sheen' like, you could see your arse in it and want to wipe that glossy overproduced sheen away by wiping your arse all over it. This debut album by UK based singer Seal was a true indication that whilst Trevor Horn may have ruled the roost as top dog producer for pop acts in the Eighties - that the nineties were going to be a far more difficult prospect for him. One single thing changed. Everybody loved stuff like ABC, Frankie Goes To Hollywood, etc, etc. Everybody loved this debut record by Seal, but suddenly, an equally great amount of people hated it. And yes, I will spend some time here talking about Trevor Horn, for you see - without the production, Seal is nothing but a voice. A soulful voice, yes. A good voice? Well, yes. Not to my own particular tastes, but there is little faulting his soulful 'rasp' of a powerful voice. Not at all. Ah, a little Seal history then. He shot to fame thanks to a nifty little tune and production by a funny little pale looking dance bod called Adamski. Not to be confused with one time Janet Street Porter boyfriend and crap TV presenter Normski, by the way. Adamski had this one tune, great stuff, beeps and bobs and melodies and such catchiness, over which he got his then mate Seal to sing. The single was credited to Adamski only and sold by the absolute truckload.

    Ah, I swing back to Trevor Horn, then? Well, yes. 'Killer' is the song in question, of course - and here features courtesy of a Trevor Horn led re-recording. It's half as good as the original, if that. He's spent more money on the recording than the Adamski original, that much is clear - the beeps now sound like expensive beeps. You see, these dance beats and beeps aren't the same everywhere you look! Indeed, the way a dance track is recorded and the machinery and tools and sounds used to record it are crucial. The more different sounding a dance track is, the better it is, quite often. And, following on from 'Killer', a good proportion of this debut Seal album falls under the dance category. 'Crazy' is the best song here. The best production, smoothly and expertly commercial and with a strong vocal. The lyrics may very well be simplistic, but it don't matter all that much. I can't stand listening to 'Crazy', by the way. And yes, it's the best song here. It's so.... OBVIOUS, in every way humanely imaginable. Following 'Crazy' is the re-recorded 'Killer' with overproduction that would put an Eighties Michael Jackson video to shame. 'Killer' loses so much soul over the actually enjoyable original version as a result.

    What else is here? Well, the opening song sounds quite cool, sounds ten years ahead of its time, could go down a storm in the Ibiza clubs even in the 21st century. Which just shows how little commercial dance music has progressed through the years. Trevor Horn gives the musical track his all - Seal does good vocals thing. I quite like this, even though it sounds horribly generic. Indeed, do you remember Rick Astley, produced by those cheap, dot-to-dot production merchants Stock Aitken and Waterman? Of Kylie and Jason 'fame'? Well, Trevor Horn could have had Rick Astley sing this - it'd sound exactly the same. EXACTLY. Rick was a decent singer too. He was also shit. You see what i'm getting at? No? Well, read between the lines. Being a good singer isn't everything, if you need it spelled out for you. There are dozens and dozens of great singers that never even make it as far as a gig in a pub. Why Seal, then, in particular? Why?? He got lucky. And my friends, it really IS as simple as that.

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    Ming ming@comcast.net
    get your head out of your ass. what happened? were you a good singer and did'nt get a contract? or were you left out and did'nt get a piece of the pie? maybe your pissed because you did'nt get shit. probably.

    top of page this page last updated 17/05/07

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