CD Shine [European Bonus Tracks] (CD 4338505),
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Shine [European Bonus Tracks]
1. Wait a Minute (Just a Touch)
2. No Substitute Love
3. American Boy
4. More Than Friends
6. Come Over
7. So Much Out the Way
8. In the Rain
9. Back in Love
10. You Are
11. Pretty Please (Love Me)
13. Come Over [Supa Dups Remix]
14. More Than Friends [Live] - (live)
15. Shine [Live] - (live)
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 6976
Jack Splash; Johnny Douglas; Keezo Kane; Jerry Duplessis; Mark Ronson; Swizz Beatz; Will.I.Am; Wyclef Jean; Steve McKie
Mike Butler; Jack Splash; Mike "Nyte" DeSalvo; Graham Marsh; Dominic Morley; Dylan Margerum; Brian Summer; Johnny Douglas; Padriac "Padlock" Kerio; Derek Pacuk; Mark Ronson; Will.I.Am; Steve McKie
Personnel: John Legend (vocals, keyboards); Wyclef Jean (vocals); Ben ONeill (guitar); J. Christian King, D. Williams, J. Torres (horns); Anthony Bell (piano); will.i.am (keyboards, synthesizer, drum programming); Jack Splash (keyboards, drums, percussion); Ryan Bussey, Adam Blackstone (keyboards); Keezo Kane (drums); Jimmy Coleman (congas); Steve McKie (drum programming).
Audio Mixer: Gary Noble.
Photographer: Matt Jones.
Arrangers: Jack Splash; Johnny Douglas; Jerry Duplessis; Wyclef Jean.
The debut album from London native Estelle, 2004's The 18th Day, stalled at number 40 on the U.K. chart. Uneven and tentative but not without a handful of major standouts -- like the wistful and animated "1980," where she displayed her MC'ing chops, and the Mary J. Blige-worthy slow groove "Dance with Me" -- it wasn't enough to further her label's support. Estelle proposed a John Legend-produced follow-up, which V2 did not approve, so she relocated to the U.S. and secured a deal with Atlantic through Legend's Homeschool boutique label. Capping a cunningly punitive turn of events orchestrated by a once-shunned artist (i.e., "How ya like them apples?"), "American Boy" -- a flirty disco-funk track featuring Kanye West and production from will.i.am, who re-heated the beat from his own "Impatient" -- took a swift route the top of the U.K. pop chart. When Shine was released, just after the chart feat, the song had yet to make as much of a splash in the States; regardless of how the single or the album fares from a commercial standpoint, Estelle can at least be proud of having made a second full-length that builds upon and far outstrips her first. Wyclef Jean and will.i.am produce two songs each, while the remainder is divided between a wide-ranging cast including Mark Ronson, Jack Splash, and Swizz Beats, all of whom produce one track. Through it all, Estelle is the main attraction and is never upstaged or out of her depth, whether she is trading lines with Cee-Lo or Kanye West, switching between singing and rapping on "More Than Friends," or swapping out blissful rocksteady reggae for nerved-up glitz-pop. Most impressive is "So Much Out the Way," where she does the work of at least three vocalists of varying modes, all over a Wyclef concoction that alternates between tautly snapping jazz-funk (courtesy of Louis Johnson's bass from Grover Washington, Jr.'s "Hydra") and Wall of Sound soul (transformed from Bob Marley's "So Much Things to Say"). Not many vocalists could possibly navigate all this terrain without losing a beat, but Estelle has no trouble pulling it off with her versatility and easy-to-like personality. Her second act is ceaselessly enjoyable, one of the finer R&B albums to be released in 2008. [The 2008 European edition included bonus tracks.] ~ Andy Kellman
Rolling Stone (p.68) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[T]his West London homegirl's perspective is etched in her husky singing, fleet-tongued rapping and wised-up lyrics."
Q (Magazine) (p.107) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[I]t's quality urban pop that achieves its goal..."
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Homeschool Records 6976
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