Boyzone butcher the best ballads - The Ultimate Love Songs Collection?

2006-03-29 18:16

With the teen pop phenomena seemingly in its final death throes it was only a matter of time before the inevitable glut of "Greatest Hits" selections swamped the market. Enter one of the definitive movers 'n shakers on the boy band scene of the 90s, Boyzone and a 19-track collection of ballads that's aimed at turning an entire new generation of pre-pubescent girls and galloping grannies on to their shy 'n sensitive sounds.

Unfortunately, with lashings of emotive strings, piano swells and completely wooden vocal arrangements, some of the finest love songs ever written come across as nothing more than an Idols style karaoke catalogue. Elton John and Bernie Taupin's soaring "Your Song" and Cat Stevens "Father and Son" are standout travesties, with lead singer Ronan's whining nasal croon milking each phrase without ever coming clean. And Tracy Chapman's aching "Baby Can I Hold You" finds the teen poppers actually trying to ape the folk singer's world-weary rasp!

Thankfully, on fluffy puppy love pop ditties like "No Matter What", "All that I Need" and "Isn't it a Wonder" Boyzone sound far more believable, the quartet actually revelling in the cheesy harmonising vocal interplay. Best of the bunch is definitely their rendition of "Ben" which perfectly captures the child like innocence of a pre-teen Michael Jackson.

The boys successfully prove that being really bad at singing is not a good thing. Even for a silly pop group.

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