Release Date: 12.27.99
Record label: BMD/Virgin
24 Hours, 7 Listens
by: michael r. smith
That's how long it took for this reviewer to get a good feel of Tina Turner's new release Twenty-Four Seven. This is not because it is a terrible album, because actually it is quite good. It is just such a unique sounding package, one that Tina manages to fit her like a glove. But what else can you expect from such an enduring legend?
Part of the reason that this album is so different from anything Tina, or anyone else, has done before is due to the sleek production of Absolute and Waxworx. Deeply atmospheric and melodic, sometimes dark and heavy-hitting, Tina's new musical path takes its truest form in the second half. From the best cuts, "Go Ahead" and "Without You" right down to the uplifting title track, Tina has hit yet another stride in her long (and leggy) career.
Should you be afraid that Tina is playing it safe and jumping on the Madonna and Cher electronica bandwagon is to totally miss the point here. Yes, there are laser sounds on "Talk to My Heart" and "I Will Be There", but there are also orchestra accompaniment on a few tracks and even a slinky jazz number to keep those romance candles burning.
As for the first half, Tina stays true to her loyal fan base with her usual sounding fare. Even the highly touted dance singles "When the Heartache is Over" and the curiously-titled "Absolutely Nothing's Changed" sound like all-too-familiar territory for Tina stylistically. But like her hairstyle, Tina Turner's music is her own trademark. There certainly hasn't been an outcry for her to do anything differently. If anything, most people want to see her keep right on going into her 60's and beyond. And just as we thought we have come to the point where we know what to expect from her, she does a surprising about-face and decides that her upcoming world tour will be her last. That bandwagon, of course, is being driven by another Diva, Miss Streisand. Or should we refer to her as Mrs. Brolin now?
The one way that Tina has distanced herself from her female counterparts is her devotion to her Buddhist religion that has given herself a strong sense of inner peace, as well as an unselfish attitude toward her fellow man. Love has become even more important than her career, and she has recently snagged herself a boyfriend 16 years her junior. Her new credo should be "What's Age Got to Do With It"! Regardless of whatever decisions Tina makes in her career or her life, Tina has carved out her own niche as one of the very few inspirational artists. I think it is fairly safe to say that she has paid her dues and then some. She can and will do whatever she wants, and as the song goes "Whatever You Need".