“Keep It Up” shows Therese Neaime as a pop star that already sounds as if ey was doing albums for ten or fifteen years. There is a certain inertia that is present during the disc’s opening track “Keep It Up” that makes the track getter fitting in the adult contemporary charts than anywhere else. The easiest comparison that one can make between Therese Neaime and the rest of pop music would have to be with Secret Garden. This style continues with “Not Easy”.
The track is very infused with the tenets of pop music, but there is not much present during songs like “Not Easy” that would have individuals singing along to Neaime’s chorus. “Take Life As It Comes” continues with the adultr contemporary sound, as the track has a number of links to the material of individuals like Vanessa Williams. This is not intended to be a dig at Neiame, but shows the specific genres and artists in which ey has links to. The one thing that is strong during “Livin’” and especially during “Take Life As It Comes’ has to be the level of layering that takes place during this track. Instead of sounding cluttered or otherwise dissonant, the additional layers allow for the track to gain a fullness that few pop albums are able to achieve. “Color of Love” is the first track thatis on “Livin’” that could be picked up to be a crossover hit with the young crowd, but the one impediment to that potential has to be the flaccid instrumentation that is present during the track.
There just is a jazzy component to it that does not mesh with what is commonly used during an average pop track. Each of the songs on “Livin’” are thoughtful and little gems of pop brilliance, but this means that the listener base to Neaime will be smaller than it really should be. For those individuals that want to listen to substantive pop music, “Livin’” is an intelligent purchase. There is little on the disc that will not withstand criticism, and the runtime (45 minutes) is more than enough time for individuals to gain an appreciation for what it is that Neaime does on the disc. Hopefully Neaime will get more play than can be reasonably forecasted, and that eir star is closer to a Des’ree than any of the thousands of pop acts that never get radio play number one.
Top Tracks: Color of Love, You
Therese Neaime – Livin’ / 2006 Future / 12 Tracks / http://www.neaime.net / Reviewed 27 October 2006