Celine Dion Loved Me Back to Life Review: Taking Back Her Throne

Celine Dion, one of the reigning queens of the music industry in the 90’s, put her career on hold for family and love, and to a stage in Las Vegas. Now, nearly a decade later, after the release of 2007’s “Taking Chances,” she returns with another album, this one very pop, very our time in “Loved Me Back to Life.” Question is, can she have our forgiveness?

The opening track, “Loved Me Back To Life,” certainly sets you on that road, or me, at least. A surprisingly hip track (she’s 45, just to throw that out there), Dion immediately sets out to reclaim her throne as queen of the charts. A beautiful song(written by singer-songwriter Sia) in which she praises her lover on helping her find true love, Dion sets into the raging tempo as she gets down to business with the first verse before she jumps into the hook, belting the chant “you loved me back to life.” The song is one any Celine Dion fan could quickly appreciate and one new listeners could come to respect.

The number three track, “Incredible,” a duet with singer-songwriter Neyo, is even more of a surprise. It opens with a quick piano piece and sets the stage for the declaration of love anew (and possibly reinstating Dion’s presence on the charts). Dion and Neyo make a formidable team as either helps the other on all notes, supporting and strengthening each other, Dion’s belts to Neyo’s smooth voice. Although the song is nearly four minutes long, it feels very short and leaves you wanting more from the two as well as wondering how they coupled up on such a duet.

If you aren’t interested by now, get ready.

The number seven track, “Didn’t Know Love,” is slow, even for Dion. A mellow track, very Sarah McLachlan, Dion slowly details the symptoms of love without missing a beat. More for the lyrics supposedly, the song is cute. Far from hits such as the infamous “My Heart Will Go On” and “The Power of Love,” the song is very ‘rainy day,’ quietly and tightly restrained. Dion still manages to get her point across however, and while it isn’t a song one would completely enjoy, it does its magic.

Some songs, like the number nine track, “Overjoyed,” a duet with Stevie Wonder and the number 10, “Thankful,” retain the classic presence of Dion’s true artistry. Solid and powerful, they bring you back to the days where her voice vivaciously empowered and overwhelmed your ears and heart.

The closing track, “Unfinished Songs,” is a quick track dedicated to the person inside us all waiting to be awakened and heard. Dion doles out a hopeful track about hope b and reason, comparing all to the songs we relate to or use to express our deeper emotions. A quick track, Dion slowly guides you to tranquility and picks it up with her signature belt on the final hook and bridge, giving those hope as well as finally giving fans what they asked for.

The album is neither bad nor is it entirely great, but safe. Dion is careful not to overexert her powerful vocals on ballads as she tones it down in order to fit the mainstream sound. She’s creative, careful and keeps the album intact. Both longtime fans and new listeners will come to appreciate the album. While she hasn’t entirely reclaimed her throne, it is clear that this is a voice of legacy, power and strength. Three and a half out of five stars and a warm welcome back.

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