Saturday, 29 August 2009

I Want to Know What Love Is

Yes, I surely do...but enough about me and my personal life, especially when there's a new Mariah Carey single to review - Mimi's gone and covered Foreigner's 1984 number 1 power ballad, 'I Want to Know What Love Is'.  Mariah's reps and label are trying to pass this second single from her upcoming album, 'Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel' as the album's first 'official' single because they were disappointed with the chart performance of the first single, 'Obsessed'. Excuse me while I give these jokers a roll of the eyes and exclaim 'Bitch...puh-leaze!'.  Don't even pretend that 'Obsessed' was NOT the first single when Mariah made a video for it and everything (albeit, a pretty weak video with one stagnant gimmick...although, Mariah made for a rather convincing F-2-M transexual).  So, 'Obsessed' peaked at number 11 on Billboard's Hot didn't cracked the top 10 and everyone at Island go into panic mode!  Well, 'Obsessed' just returned to the number 11 position this week so it could very well crack the top 10, yet!

Anyway, the new single is a nice update of a classic rock ballad, with plenty of high-pitch squealing that only hardcore Mariah fans will enjoy (like me!).  It's a reverent cover...perhaps, a bit too reverent. Considering that Chris 'Tricky' Stewart is one of the co-producers of this track, I would have expected something more radical and more contemporary.  After all, Tricky was one of the co-producers on 'Touch My Body', undoubtedly one of Mariah's most sonically innovative songs...EVAH!

I wonder if this will be a hit for Mariah.  She has had her fair share of successful cover singles, including Badfinger's 'Without You' (her rendition being so iconic that even 2008 Music Idol Bulgaria auditionee, Valentina Hasan, attributed her cover of 'Ken Lee' to Mariah), The Jackson 5's 'I'll Be There' and Lionel Richie and Diana Ross' duet, 'Endless Love' (to those of you who were wondering, no, I didn't forget about her cover of Phil Collins' 'Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now)'...the omission was intentional) but the thing that all of these singles have in common is that it was a different pop chart landscape when they all came out, which was the 90s, when Mariah could do no wrong.  The only way this version will blow up the charts is if mainstream radio picks it up but I fear that it may just end up being relegated to adult contemporary and easy listening stations, instead.  Oh well, there's always the third (or is that 'second'?) single!  

One last thing, Mariah, I'll tell you what love is - love is a fan who has been devoted to your music since he was a 10-year old boy and in all 19 years since he first saw you in the video for 'Vision of Love', bought every single album...even the soundtrack to 'Glitter'!  That's true love.

For those of you who wanna hear Mariah's song, here it is.

For those who don't, enjoy the magnificently stout Valentina Hasan's 'Ken Lee'.

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