ARTIST OVERALL RATINGS
Jai McDowall won the 2011 edition of Britain's Got Talent. This usually means a lot of promotion and effort from Sony resulting in big sales, but although the British public believed in him, Simon Cowell clearly did not. McDowall's token album, Believe, was quietly released, and then swiftly brushed under the carpet, leaving absolutely no doubt that he has since been dropped. To be fair to Sony, McDowall is not superstar material, but this is still one of the worst cases of an opportunity lost as Believe is one of the better Syco (or Simco, as it's now known) releases and McDowall has a lovely warm tone to his voice. The album has a good selection of material for younger generations, but safe for the light crossover audience. Most covers are popular pop or rock songs that have already been tried and tested by other classical crossover artists, such as U2's 'With or Without You', Evanescence's 'Bring Me To Life', Coldplay's 'Fix You' and Faith Hill's 'There You'll Be'. The most daring cover is Nickelback's 'How You Remind Me' which translates smoothly into a delicate piano ballad. The arrangements are polished and slick which complement McDowall's glossy vocals. Unfortunately, whilst McDowall possesses a pretty voice he often struggles to connect to the material, making Believe a pleasant listen, but one that can lack substance. One can hope that McDowall will continue on and fulfil his promising potential, whether it's at the West End or treating us to more crossover.
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