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CD REVIEW: Steve Holt – “the dream”
By Stacey Board - 01/18/2003 - 12:50 AM EST

Artist: Steve Holt
Album: “the dream”
CD Review: When I listened to the CD, I had immediate comparison in my mind to singer Michael Franks because of the breathy smooth singing style. There’s a jazz feel to the first cut, “Soon” complete with Santana touches on electric guitar and Herb Alpert style trumpet flourishes. The song is as smooth as a well chilled martini, but actually lyrically it strikes me as a bit dark, which is an interesting juxtaposition. I think it’s the strongest cut because of its edgy beat and energy.

Most of the songs on the CD though are more subdued than that one and are more what I would describe as easy listening pop ballads. In December of 2002, Steve was given honorable mention in the USA Songwriting Competition. He has an extremely polished production on the CD, and I can hear why it impressed those judges.

Of the 10 songs on the disc, two are covers. The cover of “Let It Be” would be completely unrecognizable to someone not familiar with its lyrics and/or looking at the liner notes. The tempo and melody are completely changed and only part of the lyrics are used. The other cover, “Can’t Find My Way Home”, the old Blind Faith classic, is also done in a completely different manner than the original. It’s piano based with a jazz treatment and very restrained vocals. Personally I prefer covers that are not mirror or images of the way they were originally done and then its just a matter of whether the new treatment is your cup of tea or not.

The production is lush and rich and very radio friendly. Fans of adult contemporary power pop artists like Celine Dion will appreciate this CD and be right at home with its sound.

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