Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Miley Cyrus - Can't Be Tamed

Miley Cyrus is back with Can't Be Tamed - and I guess whether you like this album or not depends on whether you like Miley. Personally, I think the combination of pop, rock and country that Miley delivers works pretty well. It's not a sure bet, but it's a reasonably safe one.

The problem with Can't Be Tamed is that she's building on a changing reputation - so much of Miley's music at the moment seems to be about breaking away from the Disney image and building a new rock chick persona. She needs to be careful that those aims don't become the dominant force in deciding which records she puts out.

On Can't Be Tamed though, it's hard to tell what forces really are at work. There's not a great deal that sounds like country music, and not a lot that really counts as rock either. I suppose the genre you'd have to assign this one to is pop. There are pop ballads, upbeat pop, but it's all... poppy. That's not necessarily a bad thing though. I guess I'm just looking for another anthemic track like The Climb.

High Points

Not because of the song itself, but I always like to see a track called Stay. It's one of those titles that everyone seems to have a go at - and Miley's effort isn't half bad. There's even a shred of originality for such a well worn title, as in this case she spins the old "don't leave me" storyline around to say "if you ask me, I will stay". Nice touch.

Every Rose Has Its Thorn. A true classic, a legend of music, and although Miley's version is a little vanilla and a little sugary, it's still good to hear her give it a go. It does lack a little power though, which is a shame for such a great song.

Take Me Along. This is about as close to The Climb as you're gonna get on Can't Be Tamed. It starts well, if that's what you're looking for, but it soon caves into the pop temptation and introduces an oddly upbeat backing track. It takes what might have worked well as a big ballad - because heaven knows this album needs one - and takes some of the wind out of its sails.

The Verdict

I like Miley. I don't really know why. I think her voice is weird, but I like listening to it. I don't think her songs are that great, but I like listening to them, too. Will I be rushing out to buy Can't Be Tamed? Nope. Will I be adding any of the tracks to my Spotify playlists? Not sure yet. There's nothing breathtaking here - but I wouldn't filter anything out, either, if I was making a Miley Cyrus playlist.

Perhaps that's the most telling aspect of this album. Everything feels like filler, there are no stand-out songs. Often I hear albums from people I like, and can't work out what they wouldn't put out as a single. Here, I can't decide what's strong enough to stand alone.

The Final Score: 65%

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