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Barry White Song Reviews


I've Got So Much to Give (1973)

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I've Got So Much to Give

Standing in the Shadows of Love B+

It’s remarkably simple for an eight minute track. A simple four-chord sequence pipes up with the piano and White brings in a few other instruments for the merry fun… although it’s certainly appealing that he used a sitar and pizzicato strings in the mix! But it’s a big waste of time if you ask me. The song doesn’t really begin until the six minute mark when the orchestration apparently discovered that it had grown lush enough. Well, White just went ahead and proved that more is better… apart from a few shaky bridges, every bit of detail in the orchestration was fantastic. That’s not to mention that the melody is catchy and I White’s spirit-filled vocals have quite a delivery. If it was four minutes, it’d be quite a classic…

Bring Back My Yesterday C

Funny that Barry White’s greatest trademark (his deep-voice mumblings) is his greatest weakness. The first two minutes of this seven-minute featuring White’s vocals are awful and pointless. The actual song isn’t bad even though the melody is awfully trite and overstays its welcome long before it is through. The instrumentation is as lush as always, but that fakey mandolin sound is a rather horrible distraction.

I’ve Found Someone D+

It starts exactly like the previous track, which just means that I’m getting bored to tears! Not that the song itself has the same effect. The fact that the song is less than six minutes seems like a relative blessing, but it has fewer interesting ideas than the previous track. The orchestration is as lush as ever, but it’s bland and meaningless. The melody isn’t catchy whatsoever. There should be more soul in this soul!

I’ve Got So Much to Give D

I know that I’ve listened to a few early Philip Glass tracks and decided I didn’t suffer any psychological maladjustment from the experience! But all this mindless repetition with this eight-minute track (especially that loop at the beginning and again in the middle) makes me wish that White would have dared to exercise a little more creativity. The orchestration is utterly boorish though still lush, and the melody is even worse. Barry White was such a limited songwriter/arranger! Oh well, this just isn’t one of his better moments. Forgive the man. Let’s just remember him for the highlights.

I’m Gonna Love You Just a Little More Baby B

With patience, it pays off. His pre-song mumbling ranks as the smarmiest of the whole album (although still small potatoes compared to the nonsense he would pull off later), but the dark and driving backing music makes it much more tolerable. A steady rhythm, funk guitars and thicker atmosphere keep the experience more enjoyable. This transitions gracefully into the main section of the song (featuring a memorable melody) making this one of the more structurally sound pieces of this album.


Stone Gon' (1973)

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Stone Gon'

Girl It’s True, I’ll Always Love You C-

He spends two and a half minutes with his inane mumbling at the beginning of this track, which is longer than he did it on any track in his previous album! However, since it’s the first song, I’m a tad more willing to accept it… but I better not hear it on any of the other songs!! (Such a rhetorical threat!) Oddly, the song very slowly evolves from its nothing beginning… It’s half over before it catches fire, and by that time I’m already rather bored with it. For the most part, the entire song is the same chord progression repeated for nearly nine minutes straight. But at least it proves that it had enough merit for two minutes. Obviously, White didn’t work hard enough on this!! Come on! Nine minute songs need substance!!!!!! There are no shortcuts, dearie!

Honey Please, Can’t You See B+

Much better! Due to the lack of smarmy mumbling, this track is only five minutes long and benefits greatly as a result! The proceedings are a marginally catchy pop song with a right-as-rain lead vocal performance. Hate to say that this isn’t inspired beyond that, but I’m merely happy that White created something that’s solid, for once!

You’re My Baby D+

I think White’s whole point is to keep pushing our buttons waiting to find exactly where the straw breaks the camel’s back. First of all, why would you put straw on a camel? Secondly, modern science can, by no means, justify the existence of a nine-minute track with the typical two-minutes worth of ideas. Naturally, the guy spends the first three minutes mumbling, giving me good reason to space out for that time thinking about philosophy and how to obtain world peace. Then, he starts to sing, but I’m already sick of the song by that point! Can’t you experiment with your melodies/development/chord progressions a little bit, or is your target audience really this simpleminded? (Here come the angry e-mails…)

Hard to Believe I Found You D+

Hard to believe I’m still giving this album a fair listen! As expected, this is seven minutes worth of two minutes of ideas. What’s horrible about this one is that the two minutes worth of ideas were bad ones… So, really, this is seven minutes worth of a prison sentence! Naturally, the mumbling at the beginning is just another indicator of a sheer lack of ideas (I admit I try to pay attention to something else whenever White is mumbling for fear that I’ll feel cheapened). Despite its repetitive nature, certain aspects of the instrumentation keep it afloat … barely.

Never Never Gonna Give You Up A-

Is it blasphemous to immediately think of Rick Astley? … Well, it’s definitely blasphemous to the brain whenever you think about Astley, but … Hey! Barry White was a real soul singer! … Well, I sat through this whole album politely (with the exception of that one part when I insulted the target audience), and here is the pay-off. What is this song, anyway? FINALLY a pang of creativity and awesomeness rolled into one! The intro is musically creepy and White’s mumbling, for one, is not so creepy… the mumbling is more surreal, which is much better than simply whispering in the microphone to half-witted orchestral arrangements like he usually does. The instrumentation is bolder and more purposeful this time. The song catches fire whenever the chorus decides to pop up and the verses aren’t bad, either. The whole thing is more varied and the arrangements are more inspired. This is what happens when Barry White decides to work harder: Something that’s not boring! Its main drawback, invariably, is its length. It didn’t have much business existing past the five-minute mark considering he stopped doing anything different after the two minutes! BUT he devalued it by bringing it to eight whole minutes. FILLER!!!!!!!!


Can't Get Enough (1974)

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Can't Get Enough

Mellow Mood, Pt. 1 A-

Things are looking up already! This is easily the nicest, most professional opener than the combined efforts of his previous album. The orchestration is more focused, lush, and much less monotonous. It could very well be used for a film opener… What’s more it’s only two minutes long! What??? I was kind of missing those boring 10-minute pieces of nonsense!

You’re the First, the Last, the Everything A+

Wow! That was a sudden though somehow stylish transition into this track! This embodies all the musical ideas that White has been doing ever since he started except now they finally seem like good ideas. He opens the track mumbling! But his trademarked deep voice amongst a subdued though heavy and threatening funk groove sounds fantastic! He actually writes a bridge to the main portion of the song instead of blindly rushing into it as usual… Oh, and the main portion is about as catchy as it gets. The lush, pompous instrumentation charmingly has a bit of a “Monster Mash” pop sense. Hey, it looks like worked his heart out on this and, *GASP*, it’s only four and a half minutes long. It’s a Christmas miracle! Surprisingly, the weakest link is White’s vocal performance, which sounds too strained.

I Can’t Believe You Love Me D+

He was willing to work hard a little bit, but not more than necessary it seems. Here is the filler. Ten minutes worth of three minutes of good ideas. Well, hey at least that’s an improvement considering his 10-minute songs previously only had merely two minutes worth of good ideas. Also, to its credit, it only starts to grow tiresome after five minutes, and it’s better developed. …Still, he ought to know better than this…

Can’t Get Enough of Your Love Babe A-

Excuse me, but do I hear you say: “Too much of anything is not good for you, baby.” Why don’t you practice what you preach, Rev. White?? … Well, he temporarily follows his own advice again and keeps the song length at under five minutes. The melody is catchy (and I swear it was ripped off when Deniece Williams sang “Let’s Hear it For the Boy”). Well, let’s hear it for Barry White! … It’s pretty clear that it’s best to pick and choose the tracks you want to listen to him. This is why I do track reviews, I guess.

Oh Love, Well We Finally Made it B

Barry White said the D-word!! He’s naughty!! Hey look at this! The track is less than four minutes long. This is getting too good for words! … Unfortunately, the musical ideas aren’t particularly compelling. The orchestration is just a tad too posh and vomity and the melody, while fine, isn’t very memorable. Hey, at least it’s an average idea without the burden of sounding like filler!

I Love You More Than Anything In This World, Girl C+

Big kudos to the big guy for keeping the song length at a tolerable level. The musical ideas are relatively pedestrian, especially the melody, which isn’t catchy whatsoever. A few of the harmonies are rather pretty, and the overall the effect of the song is entertaining without sounding overly vomitous. Nice job even though the ideas continue to be somewhat lackluster.

Mellow Mood, Pt. II B

An unnecessary conclusion, but … whatever. Sloppier and much less compelling than the opener, but with a running length of less than a minute and a half, it really doesn’t do much harm.


Rhapsody in White (1974)

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Rhapsody in White

Barry’s Theme B+

Nice of Mr. White to write a song for Barry Manilow. I’m sure he was grateful! This is a lavishly orchestrated tune with, naturally, crunchy funk guitars and a tight drum beat. It’s very ‘70s sounding although not quite cheesy enough to be distracting. White does well enough to change the textures around to keep it sounding fresh even though I still want to complain about a few of his bridges! (Really, I’m just grateful that he advanced far away from repeating the same four chords over and over again… VERY GRATEFUL.) The themes are a bit weak, but I guess this sort of works as an “overture” if that’s what he was going for.

Rhapsody in White B+

Less likable this time even though it’s very grandiose. I get the feeling that I should be watching a movie in which case this song could be fantastic! The themes are a little weak for intimate listening, but … maybe I’m approaching this wrong. Put this on your exercise playlist and you’ll probably end up liking it a lot. The orchestration is very well done here! WORK ON THE THEMES!!

Midnight and You B

Alright, Mr. Man. If you’re going to mumble at the beginning of your song, then you’d might as well suck it in and belt a few lyrics about your latest erection. That why people like listening to you in the first place, you dirty old man. Anyway, I was half-expecting this song to suck or something because it’s slower and more subdued. The themes aren’t much to speak of, but White’s textures are interesting. He might have put restraints on that wobbly funk guitarist, but … well, I guess there’s nothing wrong with over ‘70s-fying the thing. While you’re at it, I mean.

I Feel Love Coming On C

Now that I made that erection statement, these song titles suddenly have saucy double entendres. I’ll try to keep my mind clean! … He’s talking at the beginning again, but he’s not willing to give us the cookie! SING, DANG IT!!!! … OK, if you’re not going to sing, the least you could do is deliver a memorable melody or two. We don’t need another bombastic orchestral piece. This one isn’t even structured as well as some of the previous numbers even though it’s still quite good. Extra points taken away for the unnecessary six-minute running length. (He’s done much worse in the past, but we must teach him a lesson!)

Baby Blues D+

No joke: “Baby Blues” refers to baby blue panties, and he discusses them at length at the beginning of this. Is this guy creepy or what? Still refusing to sing, he delivers a saccharine sweet orchestral arrangement (without a melody at all, it seems). This isn’t considered music in some circles. Please excuse me as I vomit.

Don’t Take it Away From Me B

This is an obvious clone of “Barry’s Theme” and a much weaker one at that. Somehow I don’t mind it, though… After I suffer through his loony-bin mumbling, the strings in the orchestra are scaling all over the place, which takes me on an unprecedented journey through ‘70s cheese-land. OLD CHEESE!!

What a Groove D

What an annoying groove more like it. I’d say this is one of the more distinct songs of the album with White’s attempt to deliver a faux-Latin rhythm. This is really horrible though… The rhythm isn’t particularly well constructed and the groove is remarkably bland. This gets on my nerves pretty quickly… A shame, because the train-like intro was interesting!

Love’s Theme B

Alright, back to the glorious cheesiness that we’re all used to. Yup, the scaling strings and wobbly funk guitar are all in their right places. The theme is OK, but it’s still a little too weak. It’d definitely work better as a movie soundtrack instead of listening to it straight up like I’m doing now. … If you’re a nutcase and want to purchase this album, then again it’d be best to take this on one of your exercise sessions… if you’re into that sort of thing.


Together Brothers (1974)

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Together Brothers

Somebody’s Gonna Off the Man B+

Pretty good! It’s rather upbeat (which is odd because I hear the movie isn’t supposed to be happy). The orchestration is done well, and the theme is likable! The best part: None of that low-register mumbling!

So Nice to Hear A-

Somebody please tell me who Barry White is, anyway? Aren’t his soundtracks supposed to be cheesy blaxploitation things with a lot of rhythm guitar and a funky drum beat? This is a very straightforward instrumental that sounds like he’s trying to directly channel the spirit of Ennio Morricone. … It’s not bad!

Alive and Well B-

More of that funky stuff we’ve come to expect. It’s very brief at just over a minute (which must’ve drove White crazy… I know how much he likes his 10-minute sludge fests). However, the themes aren’t bad!

Find the Man Bros. C+

There’s someone whistling on this track! He does like his Morricone! … This song has a funky groove, but I sort of miss a melody and convincing, overall moods.

You Gotta Case C-

Such a bland groove. I can see where it might work well on the film soundtrack, but this isn’t very musical. Seems more like sound effects. Lucky, it’s a minute and a half long!

Killer’s Lullaby B

This is the whistling theme that appeared briefly on “Find the Man Bros.” He develops an atmosphere here with Tubular Bells-style keyboard sounds and rather thick orchestration. The problem is the melody isn’t very catchy. I need a melody, man!

Theme From Together Brothers D+

Three minutes worth of the wobbly funk guitar and absolutely no hooks whatsoever. There’s some nice development here whatsoever and the rhythm is fine! But it’s very bland and repetitive… which are attributes that I can’t imagine lent the film scene too many favors.

Getaway C

The orchestration was nicely done here! The atmosphere isn’t anything that special. The final minute of it is another one of these boring grooves. Honestly, if White would have been more creative with his chord progressions, I might find this a little less boring.

People of Tomorrow are Children Today B

Passable this time! Why is that? The theme is likable! It wallows for about a minute, but then it takes off. This is a nice song that finds the right blend between his funk music and cinematic aspirations. The coda is interesting… Sort of indicative that he wasn’t quite a genius, but the effort’s appreciated all the same.

Somebody’s Gonna Off the Man (vocal) A-

Who’s that singing there? This is the same thing that opened the album except White graces us with his voice. It was a nicely dramatic song with a good tune, but White’s vocals make it soar! This is also probably one of his career best songs… It’s a shame he couldn’t fill entire albums with this style and quality.

The Rip D+

Some morse code rhythms open this track that seems to be trying to channel modern classical music. It seems more like a half-hearted imitation, and White is clearly out of his element. Thanks for the effort. I know that he is a good person.

Stick Up B

Yes, the funk instrumentals are what he’s best at. The groove is tight and toe-tapping (and not bland like some of the others were). Love the rhythm!

Dreamin’ C+

A pleasant 40-second clip of elevator music!

Killer’s Back C-

That whistle theme returns for about 30 seconds.

Do Drop In C+

The groove is kind of creepy! That’s all it really has… Just the same rhythm for two minutes. He could have changed it a bit so that it wouldn’t grow dull so quickly, but whatever. The horns and violins he brings in were very nice though. Funny that the last two minutes of it reminds me of that Can album I just listened to! Did he own Can albums?

Killer Don’t Do It B+

It’s good in movies when there’s a certain theme attached to a character. This is the same whistle theme, but actually better than when I heard it before. The instrumentals adopt a creepy quality to it… This one’s remarkably well done.

Here Comes the Man C+

I remember this theme from earlier in the album! Couldn’t he come up with a more varied groove? This gets awfully old. The funk horns and scaling violins were done very well, however.

Dream On C-

Not bad, but slow and boring. The theme’s not very interesting. I’m trying hard to sit politely through it. The chaotic ending is nice though awkward.

Honey Please Can’t Ya See A-

This is the same song that was on Stone Gon’. I gotta say, it’s nice to hear this! We hear White’s voice, and the melody is juicy! It’s a lot like an oasis in the desert! (It’s funny that I have this a higher rating than when I heard it on its original album… Well, it’s actually nourishing here!)

Can’t Seem to Find Him D+

A surreal hodgepodge of the album’s various themes. Isn’t this over yet?

People of Tomorrow are Children Today B-

A singing track! It’s not Barry White singing, but … whatever. This is a nice song! What does it in, though, are the trite lyrics. Such a shame..


White Gold (1974)

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White Gold

Barry’s Love (Part 1) D+

Holy moly, he’s not even orchestrating his mumbling anymore! He’s mumbling simply to a little drum machine thumping. Not exactly off to a good start, is he? Finally a saxophone solo that’s a few notches above a Kenny G song chimes in and it gets a little bit better. The overall instrumentation is very clunky and misguided even though I like certain aspects about the orchestration. Sort of a disappointment, really.

Satin Soul A

Alright, so we can forget the previous song existed right? And let’s just get into the meat of all this instrumental/blaxploitation nightmare that is the Love Unlimited Orchestra! This song is mostly fantastic! Here we have a very driving rhythm and catchy bass-line. The celebratory horn lines accent the piece in just the right places. Scaling drums are very tuneful this time and about as good as it gets. Yeah, get this one on iTunes.

Always Thinking of You B+

More of that mumbling at the beginning, but he keeps to a comfortable minimum. Instead of being a driving piece of boldness as the previous track, this one chooses to keep the proceedings suave. The themes are fortunately rather catchy, and I like that electric guitar (or synthesizer, perhaps) that sounds like a runaway motor car. Those lite-power chords were a bad idea, though.

Power of Love B-

His pre-song mumbling here is actually awesome in a way… It’s not about some poor woman’s baby blue panties; it’s his life philosophy. The power of love is the greatest love of them all!!! (He doesn’t say it quite like that, but it’s just about as cheesy.) The themes here are alright but they’re not memorable at all. The instrumentation is OK, but it’s too busy for its own good. Still, I almost like this instrumental!

Spanish Lei C-

I went to high school with someone named Lei. He wasn’t Spanish, though. … This song is quite a shame, though. Post-mumbling, it originally starts out with a rather nice theme, but it doesn’t take off after that. It’s nice that White was trying to give his music a bit of non-funk flavor, but I’m afraid he’s just not good at it.

You Make Me Feel Like This (When You Touch Me) C

This album is badly going into been-there-done-that territory. Thankfully, White went back to his funk type songs, but he doesn’t appear to be especially excited about it. The song is upbeat, but it sure doesn’t seem to have much substance. The melody is hardly even present and the instrumentation is dead dull!

Only You Can Make Me Blue C+

This isn’t bad! The themes are rather weak, but at least it has a likable enough groove. The instrumentation is slightly less ho-hum than the previous one was. It doesn’t make much of an impression, I’m afraid, and even though it’s just more than three minutes it seems too long.

Dreaming C

The beginning of it is dismal. Truly boring and awful nonsense. Fortunately it picks up after that with its very smooth and sweet atmosphere. Extra points are taken away for sounding too dang bloated, though! Some woodwind instrument sounds uncannily like a singing space alien woman. (Trust me, I know about them!)

Just Living it Up B+

Well here’s a pleasant ditty! He’s taking an obvious turn for Burt Bacharach with its jumpy and sweet horn melody. The development is also very Bacharachian. The melody doesn’t make an extreme amount of impact, but … I guess it’s not supposed to. Just living it up, yeah?

Just Like a Baby B-

Not bad! The orchestration is better conceived than some of these other ones and the whole effect of it is rather successfully dramatic. The big problem with it is the theme isn’t memorable at all.

Barry’s Love (Part 2) D+

It was really unnecessary to repeat that awful theme that opened this instrumental album… especially, it’s not so wise to open and close an OK album with such dismal numbers! Again, it’s dreary and develops very slowly. Eh, switch the buggar off.


Just Another Way to Say I Love You (1975)

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Just Another Way to Say I Love You

Playing Your Game, Baby B-

This is about as pleasant, goodhearted and inoffensive as it gets without ever being good. The nice thing is that White decided to forgo it with his inane bedroom mumbling meaning that this song isn’t as groan-inducing as it would have been. The problem is this song just doesn’t get too interesting. It goes on with the same slow tempo and a couple of melodic ideas that get repeated for seven whole minutes. All the same, I do like the slow and cool tempo and the few melodic ideas that it does have. The atmosphere is rather well done with a number of sound-effects to give it a nice texture. Furthermore, White’s voice seems like it’s in top form, which is always nice to hear. Those trumpets are rather minimal, but an excellent touch.

It’s Ecstasy When You Lay Down Next to Me A-

You can tell White was trying to spread out these songs for all they were worth, because the intro is about 40 seconds too long! Luckily, what ensues is a very well done song! It’s a mid-tempo funk song with a suave rhythm and catchy rhythm guitar riff. White’s vocals are excellent here sounding like he’s a drug addict or something. The funk trumpets and scaling violins are ultra polished, and they sound fantastic. The seven-minute running length was definitely overdoing it, but I don’t seem to mind a whole lot in this instance.

You’re So Good You’re Bad C-

The one benefit here is that White doesn’t succumb to his awful bedroom mumbling. The bad thing is this is another case where White is stretching a few musical ideas very thinly (this is more than six minutes long), and I wasn’t too keen on the musical ideas to begin with. I like that it’s inoffensive at least, and that was a start. It’s a very pleasant and dull thing to sit through. It’s a shame that he could never get this filler under control.

Never Thought I’d Fall in Love With You B

A five-minute pop song? Ah, but if he repeated the line “I never thought I’d fall in love with you” once more, I might have had to hurt something. (Most likely my own hand by punching my desktop with it.) The melody isn’t as good as an ABBA song, but it’s catchy enough, and the instrumentation is fine. A very clean drum keeps the beat and there’s a cheesy electric piano to makes sure it sounds as 1970s as possible.

You Turned My Whole World Around D

I was actually hoping that White learned from his previous mistakes … But here’s an overextended track featuring his horrible bedroom mumbling anyway. And then he commences to sing a barfy romantic song that doesn’t even come close to having a memorable melody. It’s an eight-minute bore-fest, and a huge piece of filler. I know it’s bad form of me to think of a washed up lounge singer when I hear this, but I do! I can’t stop my imagination! It runs rampant sometimes!!

Oh What a Night For Dancing C

Now that that snoozefest is over, I can concentrate on this song, thank GOODNESS. Do you know what’s the best part? It’s less than four minutes long! Oh, miracles! … But don’t get too excited, because this isn’t a very good song anyway. Just a regular, mid-tempo song with an utterly unmemorable melody and nothing to speak of in the instrumentation. Pity!

Of All the Guys in the World D

Bleh… It’s nice that he wrote another song instead of extending “Oh What a Night For Dancing” for eight minutes, but this song seems based on a simple and very dull hook that loops endlessly for the four minutes. He doesn’t even break into a chorus or anything… It’s just the same thing endlessly. Even when he ends the song with just the strings, it’s playing the same chord progression… This is very boring songwriting.


Let the Music Play (1976)

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Let the Music Play

I Don’t Know Where Love Has Gone B-

This isn’t bad. The melodic hooks are OK, but they don’t seem to make much of an impact. It’s probably because he just repeats the same line of melody over and over again. That little key change in the middle of the song was a lazy, last-ditch attempt to refresh it! His mumbling is a really tired act, and I’m growing suspicious that he improvised those. The instrumentation is OK, but he did them better in previous albums. The vocals are surprisingly sloppy. Just a decently good song.

If You Know, Won’t You Tell Me C+

If you’re willing to wallow through the first minute of it, you might find White’s soaring and soulful vocal performance to your liking! It appears to break up every now and again, but he wasn’t trying especially hard with this album. It’s just one single aspect of this song, however, which unfortunately features a somewhat clunky and uninteresting song structure.

I’m So Blue and You Are Too D

For once, Barry White does something we’ve never heard him do before: Write a narrative in the point-of-view of a Smurf! Anyway, this is the classic Barry White filler that I hoped that he would have grown out of by this point of his career. Making matters worse is this wouldn’t have been any more interesting as a three-minute song. Predictably so, he mumbles at the beginning of this one. Then he starts singing a very slow and loooooooooong drawn out ballad that doesn’t have a melodic hook in sight. The instrumentation is hopelessly boring with a sleepy rhythm guitarist and a string orchestra that doesn’t do much. There’s a bit of a build-up in the middle when the song could have started getting good, but then he simply stops it and starts mumbling again. I resign!

Baby, We Better Try to Get it Together B-

A lot nicer, finally! A little bit of disco pandering here, it seems, though I can’t imagine that it would have been a major dance floor hit. The melody is nice for the first thirty seconds, but it loses its momentum fairly quickly. At any rate, it’s much better than that last one! One complaint I have is White’s vocals… they seem rather strained.

You See the Trouble With Me B

Even better than the last one! This is more of a happy sort of song with a decent melody! He repeats it a lot, but it makes an excellent listen for the first minute or so. I’m still disappointed by his lack of great orchestration standard that he was known for… everything’s just standard. At least there’s no mumbling!

Let the Music Play A-

He’s mumbling about something else other than trying to get a woman to take off her clothes for once! He’s walking to a discotheque, and then he delivers his hit single “Let the Music Play.” Ah yes… the discotheque was where it was at, wasn’t it? Luckily, the song is more than just a product of its time. White actually delivers a catchy melody that doesn’t run out of steam so quickly! Still not as good as some of his previous songs (still indicative that he wasn’t quite up to form at this point), but it does make a fun listen. Good work!!


Is This Whatcha Wont? (1976)

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Is This Whatcha Wont

Don't Make Me Wait Too Long B+

I've made it no secret that the reason I like Barry White's dance songs better than his love ballads is only because they have a beat you can dance to! They also tend to be more succinct and more melodic. And you find all these qualities with this album opener whose only major fault is they keep repeating the same hook over and over... and, as usual, the effect of that is it loses its catchiness quite severely as it runs toward the end. But there's enough of a good time generated to keep it going until the boring fade-out at the four-minute mark.

Your Love – So Good I Can Taste It C-

I have spent a lot of time complaining about Barry White's unfortunate decisions to continue to make these 10+ minute songs that go absolutely nowhere. This one is even longer than that... 12 minutes and 30 seconds. The first half of it is done in that Love Unlimited orchestral style – basically, it's very repetitive elevator music. This part is rather pleasant though nothing about it screams out for your attention. I'm only happy that he doesn't spend that whole time mumbling!! Somewhere around the six-minute mark, there's this really awkward cymbal build-up, and a new groove suddenly starts playing. Then White goes into his Dirty-Old-Man tirade for nearly two minutes. Blah!! Then, a soft groove begins to play as White finally sings! Unfortunately, this section of the song sounds sloppy... There's something wrong with that rhythm guitar, and White's vocal overdubs sound rather horrible. So, I guess this track is actually two songs in one, and this is a far cry away from songs like "I'm So Blue and You Are Too,” which was beyond horrible...

I'm Qualified to Satisfy You B

Very much like “Don't Make Me Wait Too Long.” It has a likable groove and a very repetitive hook. The major difference is the groove sounds less sloppy and less addictive, and there's quite a bit of mumbling in this. This was probably written at the last minute, but at least it's better than that previous monstrosity!

I Wanna Lay Down With You Baby F

A nine-minute song ... geeeeeeeeeeeez, I wish this guy would write shorter songs! I have a feeling the time table for this album was quite a bit less than usual, which was why he had to write so many of these lengthy, filler songs. Unlike “Your Love – So Good I Can Taste It,” this love ballad is not just a waste of time, but it's utterly tedious. He spends the first two minutes mumbling his dirty bedroom talk. And it doesn't get much better when he starts to sing... this very long-drawn-out, dreary song with a terrible melody. Obviously, they didn't spend much time working on this... It's more of a cut-and-paste composition with some terrible ideas to change the texture. (Around the six minute mark, all they can think of is to axe the strings while still singing the same old crap.) This is the sort of song that would give me a deathwish.

Now I'm Gonna Make Love to You B

This is a masssssssive improvement over the previous song, though anything was bound to be. Even these good songs sound sloppy! Sometimes slop is a good thing, but it seems that Barry White would flourish the best when everything is squeaky clean. That's just the sort of musician he was! Again, those vocal overdubs are too blocky... He could have tried harmonizing a little bit, or something. This is another one of those songs with a marginally good hook, but they just repeat the thing so much that it loses its power! It's a shame these guys weren't very interested in songwriting...


Sings For Someone You Love (1977)

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Sings For Someone You Love

Playing Your Game, Baby B-

This is about as pleasant, goodhearted and inoffensive as it gets without ever being good. The nice thing is that White decided to forgo it with his inane bedroom mumbling meaning that this song isn’t as groan-inducing as it would have been. The problem is this song just doesn’t get too interesting. It goes on with the same slow tempo and a couple of melodic ideas that get repeated for seven whole minutes. All the same, I do like the slow and cool tempo and the few melodic ideas that it does have. The atmosphere is rather well done with a number of sound-effects to give it a nice texture. Furthermore, White’s voice seems like it’s in top form, which is always nice to hear. Those trumpets are rather minimal, but an excellent touch.

It’s Ecstasy When You Lay Down Next to Me A-

You can tell White was trying to spread out these songs for all they were worth, because the intro is about 40 seconds too long! Luckily, what ensues is a very well done song! It’s a mid-tempo funk song with a suave rhythm and catchy rhythm guitar riff. White’s vocals are excellent here sounding like he’s a drug addict or something. The funk trumpets and scaling violins are ultra polished, and they sound fantastic. The seven-minute running length was definitely overdoing it, but I don’t seem to mind a whole lot in this instance.

You’re So Good You’re Bad C-

The one benefit here is that White doesn’t succumb to his awful bedroom mumbling. The bad thing is this is another case where White is stretching a few musical ideas very thinly (this is more than six minutes long), and I wasn’t too keen on the musical ideas to begin with. I like that it’s inoffensive at least, and that was a start. It’s a very pleasant and dull thing to sit through. It’s a shame that he could never get this filler under control.

Never Thought I’d Fall in Love With You B

A five-minute pop song? Ah, but if he repeated the line “I never thought I’d fall in love with you” once more, I might have had to hurt something. (Most likely my own hand by punching my desktop with it.) The melody isn’t as good as an ABBA song, but it’s catchy enough, and the instrumentation is fine. A very clean drum keeps the beat and there’s a cheesy electric piano to makes sure it sounds as 1970s as possible.

You Turned My Whole World Around D

I was actually hoping that White learned from his previous mistakes … But here’s an overextended track featuring his horrible bedroom mumbling anyway. And then he commences to sing a barfy romantic song that doesn’t even come close to having a memorable melody. It’s an eight-minute bore-fest, and a huge piece of filler. I know it’s bad form of me to think of a washed up lounge singer when I hear this, but I do! I can’t stop my imagination! It runs rampant sometimes!!

Oh What a Night For Dancing C

Now that that snoozefest is over, I can concentrate on this song, thank GOODNESS. Do you know what’s the best part? It’s less than four minutes long! Oh, miracles! … But don’t get too excited, because this isn’t a very good song anyway. Just a regular, mid-tempo song with an utterly unmemorable melody and nothing to speak of in the instrumentation. Pity!

Of All the Guys in the World D

Bleh… It’s nice that he wrote another song instead of extending “Oh What a Night For Dancing” for eight minutes, but this song seems based on a simple and very dull hook that loops endlessly for the four minutes. He doesn’t even break into a chorus or anything… It’s just the same thing endlessly. Even when he ends the song with just the strings, it’s playing the same chord progression… This is very boring songwriting.


The Man (1978)

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The Man

Look At Her C+

As long as it’s not a slow dance, eh? … This ain’t no slow dance! It’s a boring dance, but I’ll discuss that a little later. As you might be aware, The Man is Barry White’s big breakthrough into full-fledged disco dance music. The disco beat is definitely there with a hand-clap at every other beat and a would-be infectious horn riff. This goes on for too long, and then Barry White starts to sing a very simple melody in his classic suave vocals. (Gotta admit that he wasn’t best suited for this sort of music… but he’s just trying to make some money, right? Disco is where it’s at, baby!) His idea to put crowd sound bytes in the background, I gotta admit, was a cool idea. Almost makes me think I’m right there on the dance floor watching all those idiots dance around. No, seriously, this is fun.

Your Sweetness is My Weakness B-

I’ll say one thing… Eight-minute-long Barry White songs are easier to take when they have a disco dance beat to them. The melody is a great deal better than the previous one, and the groove is catchier. Those saxophones coming in at those intervals were pretty cool… Not sure what he seems to like having those handclaps at every other beat, but that’s OK I guess. White’s sleepytime vocals seem funny… especially when he’s singing over those professional back-up vocals. (I just had a horribly unfunny thought… do you suppose White was singing about an ice cream cone the whole time? That would explain the vocals…)

Sha La La Means I Love You B+

I always wanted to know what “Sha la la” meant… thanks… I’ll start signing my letters with that. … White’s trying to go tropical here, it seems. A very unoriginal Latin groove (samba, maybe) starts playing and White adds his Love Unlimited Orchestra instruments on top of that. There’s a bit where he goes crazy with the trumpets, which is just fine! This song also must have the coolest transition into the singing melody ever… It’s unexpected and glorious at the same time (gotta think it’s an accident). Naturally, this song is too long, but I gotta admit that White’s likable cheesiness really shines through in a good way here. At least he’s having fun instead of trying to suffocate me to death with his syrupy stuff… (This is still a love song obviously… I’m talking about musically.)

September When I First Met You B

Much closer to his syrupy romancy songs of his earlier albums… Although it’s nice to hear here especially since the previous three were disco ditties, and it’s easier to take. Just the usual problems of being too long plague it. The melody is OK though not especially wonderful. White is sure giving a dramatic performance… it’s pretty good!

It’s Only Love Doing Its Thing B+

A four minute pop song? … Please quit mumbling at the beginning of your songs!!! “Let me put my hand right there … Lord have mercy … right there … and then together we’ll fly … high … in the sky.” (Ha!!!) At least the background music has a backing beat. White starts to sing his smarmy romantic song. The melody is reasonably catchy, and it’s the perfect length. If only he could only compress the other songs into this length and come up with some other ones… I know; I like to imagine.

Just the Way That You Are C

Hearing White perform his rendition of the widely heard Billy Joel song is an even bolder reminder that he might have had rather fantastic albums if he could get the song lengths under control. Apart from Barry White-izing it, it doesn’t add anything to the original, which was just fine at less than five minutes (and even then probably a bit generous with the running length). White’s version is more than seven minutes. It includes the usual mumbling bit that doesn’t do anything. I’m not a big fan of the instrumentation … it drenches even more syrup that was already there on the original and cheapens it somehow. (Geez, just compare the saxophone solos on both of them... Billy Joel was Billy Joel, but this guy sounds like Kenny G.) At least it has a good melody… thanks to Billy.

Early Years B

I guess White was never one for going out with a bang. More of his usual stuff here again… He mumbles at the beginning and then a very smooth groove pipes up. The percussion is slightly more involved here than usual, which is good. I also like certain aspects of the melody, but there’s an awfully small hook-to-length ratio… Nonetheless, I do like those string arrangements and at least White has been working on those chord progressions. I will say that this is pleasant experience though not particularly enlightening.


I Love to Sing the Songs I Sing (1979)

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I Love to Sing the Songs I Sing

I Love to Sing the Songs I Sing B+

Well, I'm glad somebody's enjoying it! ... Oh wait, I'm enjoying it too. This is upbeat, and a bit cheesy. The horn section sounds a little more cliched, which adds to the dated quality of that groove. The melody is a fairly catchy one. I like White's vocals, but they seem a bit out-of-their-element with that chorus, where he's apparently trying to sound a little more like James Brown. He doesn't really have that sort of voice, I'm afraid...

Girl, What's Your Name B-

This is a sweet song though verrrrrry repetitive. To be fair, the first two songs were repetitive, but this one actually starts to get annoying. I'll never understand why so many of these songwriters don't want to develop their songs. But anyway, this has a nice mood with those violins and a twinkly clavichord. White's vocals actually fit this song. They add some contrast to that high, sappy atmosphere.

One Upon a Time (You Were a Friend of Mine) C-

Eh, he's really losing me now. The chord progression is sweet even though I'm positive, they lifted it from somewhere else. But this track actually seems a bit under-produced. The violins are very quiet, a light piano is pounding away sweetly in the background and a drum thwacks away. Where are the horns and the clavichords? I mean, that's the least you can do if you're going to drench all this corny BS on all of us... It had enough potential to earn that C-, but it's six minutes long and annoys me too much.

Oh Me, Oh My (I'm Such a Lucky Guy) D

What happened to this album? It started out so well, but it seems to have fallen into an endless pit, and it's taking me along with it. White's vocal chords sound like they've been coated in vasoline (if you can imagine what that sounds like). Again, the song is repetitive... you want to choke yourself if you hear him sing “Oh me, oh my” again. The backing instrumentals aren't that well done. The violins are sappy as ever, and that piano just pounds away meaninglessly. That sort of siren noise that we hear in the background gets terribly annoying. ... This song is an endless pile of frustration!

I Can't Leave You Alone B+

He's probing for a disco hit! He's even using those “uh-huh, uh-huh”s left over from K.C. & The Sunshine Band. But at least this song has some production. They knew if they were going to probe for a hit, the public wouldn't gobble something that sounded too dumb. The groove is well-constructed with a nice, funky brass section. There's a nice use of those synthesizers that sound a little like tornado sirens. I heard better dance songs, of course, and White's obviously aping all the other disco acts around him... But this is pretty fun.

Call Me, Baby C+

This would have made a better four-minute song than an eight-minute song... But the four-minute song is fitfully excellent, so I can't completely downgrade this song too much just for overstaying its welcome. I normally listen to these songs twice when I'm writing the track reviews, so it's doing the work for me! It would have been a B, but that terribly overextended middle section was really overdoing it. The horn section is good... It plays a sequence that's fairly common in the old jazz days. I get sick of it by the end, but that's just because these guys needed to pad the album out. Every Barry White album is like this, so I'm used to it. Yes, I'm a Barry White veteran. I am the brave of braves!

How Did You Know It Was Me? A-

By that freakedly dark voice you have, sir! Also, you're name is on the album cover, so. This isn't unlike any other Barry White song. It's another one of his love ballads. But the big difference here is this thing is actually good. More amazingly, it goes on for seven minutes and it doesn't exactly grow tiresome. That lite groove is catchy enough to have such stamina, and it's instrumented well. We have his usual, sweeping violins in the background. There's a light bass guitar, naturally, and a well-arranged horn section that helps keep the rhythm alive. White gives quite a fun vocal performance.


The Message is Love (1979)

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The Message is Love

It Ain't Love, Babe (Until You Give It) A

This is a nice, smooth love song with a danceable groove. I'd imagine this was fashioned as disco, though I'm not sure how successful it was! The groove is definitely nice... The producer knew how to pander to the times, but still make an audibly pleasing atmosphere. Some work went into these arrangements... the rhythms are intricate and sound excellent. The background violins and funk horns do exactly what you think they would, but somehow they still sound fresh. Even the vocal melody is good, and the chorus utterly soars! My only real complaint is this song is a little repetitive. White's super-deep voice is always welcome to hear, as long as he's actually singing!

Hung Up In Your Eyes B

This is one of those songs I enjoy listening to fine, but I shrug at it in the end wishing that they would have taken some time to deliver something memorable! The melody and harmonies are probably the worst aspect of this song... they're both passable though somewhat bland and does nothing to really excite me. The instrumentation is lively enough! I like that White is still favoring the real sounds of the trumpets, drums and his voice.

You're the One I Need C+

He opens this song mumbling, but he's almost doing it more it a poetical fashion than his dirty-old-man stuff... OK, so the mumbling didn't tick me off for once! Unfortunately, this song never seems to take off. It's a love ballad, of course, with smooth violins, romantic pianos and some funk guitars to keep things sexy. White's smooth voice provides a lot to this already rich ambiance... I'm missing an atmosphere, though, and song development... Again, they're just repeating the same things over and over...

Any Fool Could See (You Were Meant For Me) A-

Is it shallow of me to always pick out the dance songs over the ballads?? ...... Probably. I'd rather hear Barry White try to get me to dance than to get me to make out. The only thing I have to make out with is a grody blanket, but I have the whole house to boogie in! Again, this disco groove is very tasteful for the era... They're favoring real instruments, and none of those trashy, dated synthesizers. This sounds wonderful! You might not even consider this disco. The melody is nice and catchy, but again it starts to bog itself down by the end when the repetition makes the song stale.

Love Ain't Easy A-

A much better ballad than “You're the One I Need.” Again, it opens with the mumbling, but it doesn't last too long and it's a little closer to a poetry reading than his previous things. The real star of this show is the instrumentation, this time accented with some string pizzicato and some female back-up singers that I just want to eat up! A saxophone solo comes through in for the interlude section, and actually manages to sound romantic without being cheesy. God, that's hard to accomplish! I gave it a B+ originally, but that surprisingly graceful sax solo put it over the top. The melody is actually pretty nice here... it has better development and doesn't just rely on repeating the same hook over and over again. As far as romantic ballads go, this ain't bad! It's a little more reminiscent of classic Burt Bacharach than classic Barry White, which I'd say is a step in the right direction.

I'm on Fire B

This song starts out really well with yet another good “love groove” and a melody that manages to spark my interest better than anything yet on the album. But as the song goes on, and they don't do anything to refresh it much at all, so my interest in it slowly wanes over time. That cheap-o key change they put in at middle third is proof that they were stabbing at ways to keep it fresh... when all they really needed to do was work in some new harmonies and melodies. All this repetition never impresses me! ... But despite that, this is quite a nice song to sit through.

I Found Love B-

Anyone who was wondering how a Barry White album could afford to be seven tracks long and each of them so far being kept under six minutes had their question answered when they got to the end. “I Found Love” is seven minutes long! Again, I have to give these guys my condescending stares for continuing to stretch out three or four minutes worth of ideas into a seven-minute song. However, this never actually comes off as tedious. The melody is well-written and the groove has plenty of inertia to keep going for such a length... As long as you're not paying too close attention, you'll be fine! (It goes without saying that you don't buy Barry White albums for the same reason you buy Yes albums...) This was a potential A- or B+ but the length and repetition slowly dropped the rating. But don't feel bad about it... this has been much worse in his previous albums.


Sheet Music (1980)

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Sheet Music

Love Makin' Music A-

This is a cute song... Barry White realized what people liked (like?) using his music for, and he's playing directly to those very common elements. Yup, you can hear that smooth, string-laden atmosphere whilst White's silky smooth vocal performance speaks about what he likes to do with women. (Don't worry... he doesn't get anymore detailed than “making love.”) While we're not surprised about the style of the song, we can feel pleasantly happy that this is actually a very good example of the genre, and it's surely one of White's better love making songs. That smooth melody is sweet and catchy. The song production is quite good. It's nothing too unusual, but everything is mixed very well, and those common instrumentals don't sound nearly as cheap-o as I've accused some White songs in the past. Even that very light, groovy drum is nice and crunchy.

Sheet Music B

Is Barry White on a roll or something? Here is another catchy and well-produced song. It's a little more energetic and upbeat than the previous tune, but it doesn't interrupt that smooth ambiance, so people who hadn't given up making love don't have to switch albums in the middle of their session. Where this one loses points is that seven-minute running length. Yes, that's a little long, but I will tell you that this isn't even remotely as deathly tedious as some of his previous overextended songs. While this doesn't have the musical variety I prefer out of these lengthy tracks, it has enough energy to sustain it for that long, thanks in part to a pretty cool horn section puttering along.

Lady, Sweet Lady A-

Wow... Barry White is on a roll. I usually only expect one excellent song per album, if I get that lucky. But here's another one! Once again, it's hardly revolutionary, and this is exactly the same as the stuff he had been releasing in the mid-70s. (Since it was 1980, I can understand why this album wasn't too well-received... Ah, unwilling to change with the times, are we?) It's really a shame he didn't release this in the mid-70s, because it would have been one of his hits. Some cool, laid-back funk rhythms keep the song punchy. The melody isn't as catchy as “Love Makin' Music,” but it manages to hold my interest. The near-six-minute running time overdoes it a little, but I don't begin to notice it until it's almost over. Cool tune.

I Believe in Love B

....We know, Barry. If you didn't believe in love, then you wouldn't have had five children. And you wouldn't have released your discography. ... Well, this marks another shocking development for Barry White. This song is eight-freaking-minutes long and it's actually quite good. As you'd probably expect, all White is doing is repeating the same hook over and over again, but he keeps the groove going, and these pristine production standards continue to remain startlingly high for him. I'm not sure what they're called, but those sort of bending disco synthesizers that you would expect to hear in generic disco songs appear very subtly in the background, almost like comets. This is hardly a great song, though, and he would have raised this rating if he was to cut it by about three minutes... but still. Not bad, sir, not bad.

Ghetto Letto A-

Not just an excellent Barry White song, but one like I've never heard it before. ...Actually, it's a little more like a poor man's Stevie Wonder song, but I'll let that one slide. This has a really punchy and funky groove to it. I also hear a little bit of Earth, Wind & Fire styled xylophones in here, too! That droning chant we hear in the verses is almost menacing... which is a feeling I pretty much never get from White. The chorus is even somewhat rousing. Holy crap, is this guy actually emerging into something? ...And why did he wait until 1980 to finally do it??? (Oh... and then there's a few little snippets of genuine 1980-style jive-talking at the end of this... and note that this was the same year Airplane! came out.)

Rum and Coke B

WOW. EVEN BARRY WHITE TRYING HIS HAND AT CARIBBEAN MUSIC IS NOT ONLY TOLERABLE, BUT LIKABLE. SERIOUSLY. I WOULD HAVE ACCEPTED SOMETHING TOLERABLE. BUT I ACTUALLY LIKE THIS. ...Errr... I turned off the all-caps button. But really, this is surprising. More times than not, I hate these ultra-cheesy, quasi-electronic excursions into Caribbean music. Had I heard White did such a thing in this album before listening to this, I would have groaned so loudly that they would've heard me in Paris. But thing is actually very cute and catchy. It's generic as hell (as virtually all music like this is), but for some reason I don't mind. Finally, it's only three minutes, which was just perfect for it.

She's Everything to Me B-

One thing that had been inconspicuously absent in this album was a track that consists of him mumbling over the Love Unlimited Orchestra instrumentation. You guys know how much I hate that, right? Yeah, I still dislike it, but I will say it's much easier to take in small doses instead of those lengthy crap-fests he would typically resort to. Just for conjuring up those old memories of the worst memories I have of his '70s career, my heart wants to give this song a lower rating. But my brain says I shouldn't be biased, and I do suppose this might not be too horrible for people who didn't have the good sense to avoid actually listening to his *albums*. It's only four minutes long, anyway, so no harm done.


Barry & Glodean (1981)

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The Message is Love

Our Theme B+

This is one of the most incredibly campy things I've ever heard, and I can't make up my mind if they were serious or not. It starts out with these cosmic sound effects as if they were scoring a planetarium show. Barry White comes in and starts talking goofy nonsense in a William-Shatner-like way and tons of reverb... “We move [pause] We run [pause] into the galaxies of space [pause] We come [pause] in search of a dream [pause] What [pause] is man [pause] without woman.” Glodean comes in the middle and says stuff equally as silly. Mostly, this is an orchestral track apart from a brief vocal melody they sing. Despite the campiness of it, the orchestration isn't that bad.

I Want You C

Not bad. It's fairly standard light-soul fare, but the melody is bland. It's not that different from most of White's material, except of course he's duetting with his wife. There isn't enough variety in this one. It's basically a three-chord song, and the melody doesn't have much more than three lines. It gets old fast, which is a shame.

You're the Only One For Me C+

Whoah, synthesizers! They just pop up at the beginning of the track... it's as though Barry White only had a passing thought to suck up to the times... but as the straight Love-Unlimited-Orchestra-style instrumentation comes in, I guess he decided against it. Although that's definitely a drum machine I hear. Well, I sort of like this song. It has a nice smooth groove though it only had enough staying power for three minutes at most. I have to wonder why he even bothered bringing in his wife since they're singing the exact same note at the exact same time, most of the time. Doesn't that defeat the purpose of a duet?

This Love D

This is pretty bad. I swear, there's only four chords in this whole thing, and the bulk of the song is just two chords repeating over and over and over with a piano, and some incredibly canned drum machine rhythm. It drives me nuts! They import a few extra chords for what I guess is a chorus. It's not much of a chorus. Booo!

Better Love Is (The Worse It Is When It's Over) C-

Wow, this is schmaltzy. It's not even schmaltzy in a good way. The melody is terrible. The sort of adult contemporary sludge without a good melody at all. The instrumentation is surprisingly terrible also. The string tracks are heavy, and there's this really terrible synthesizer pulsing throughout it. ...Geez, why am I even listening to this?

You D

The alternate title of this song is “Ewww!” I guess I should be happy that they're singing an actual duet. But it's a very poorly written one. The melody is bad, bad, bad... I thought Barry White was capable of writing good melodies, but he was taking a snoozola, apparently.

We Can't Let Go of Love C+

Well, it's better than that last one. The instrumentation is a little busier, too, although it's incredibly corny. You can hear the '80s influence here though only subtly. There's the drum machine and some mechanical-sounding bass. It's a pleasant song to hear, though the schmaltzy factor of it gets just slightly grating. The ultra-repetitive melody doesn't help matters.

You Make My Life Easy Livin' C-

I'm wondering if it was possible to get cheesier than this. I don't think so... That incredibly cheap groove is sort of cute the first time around, but then it gets nerve wracking. This might not make sense to you, but this sounds exactly like that Russian boy band YouTube video with the fireworks in the background. Brrrr!

Didn't We Make it Happen Baby B-

Glodean gives a speech at the beginning of this, which means this track wasn't exactly off to the greatest start. (She was trying to mumble ala her husband, and she sounds even worse than he did.) But once the song pipes up, it's not too terrible. It has a nicer melody and the schmaltzy atmosphere doesn't attempt to murder me. And these two singers are actually harmonizing a little bit, which is a nice change of pace for a duet album.

Baby B-

Alright! It's back to that corny cosmic stuff that opened the album! We're back in space looking for the cosmic mysteries of love (or as Barry White would put it, looooooooooooooove). I probably overrated that first track, because I like stupid things that make me laugh. This is much the same.


The Right Night & Barry White (1987)

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The Right Night & Barry White

Good Dancin' Music A-

Get a load of that introduction! It's an almost mystical thing with new age sound effects and Barry White's voice sounding like a Buddhist chant or something. It's ......... surprisingly clever. Using Barry White's unusually deep voice as a more effective bass instrument than any synthesizer that you can find was an appealing idea. ... BUT THAT'S JUST THE INTRODUCTION! A much more typical '80s dance pop song comes up, but it's very catchy and shockingly not-too-dated. Barry White gets to showcase his voice amidst that electro beat, and it's not half-bad! I love Barry White's voice!!! And behold... here's an example of '80s dance pop when it's done right. I would give it an A, but that seven-minute running length forced me to slap a minus sign on there.

As Time Goes By B+

Either I accidentally slipped in a few happy pills, or I actually find this '80s pop version of that beloved Casablanca ditty enjoyable! As you might expect, they incorporate an '80s dance groove to it, and it's a surprisingly tasteful one. The texture is intricate, and it's not as much of an '80s synth nightmare as you think it would be. Those strings sound just like they did in his earlier albums, but in a brand new home! ... As long as you're going to be in the '80s pandering to the popular tastes, keep making stuff like this!

Sho You Right C-

Much less successful this time, although I appreciate the atmosphere they're trying to pack on here! The groove is pretty good for the first minute, and this would've made a perfectly fun three-minute song! However, they inexplicably decide to drag the buggar on for a whopping eight minutes. What kind of attention spans do you think we music listeners have???? Stylistically, this is very much in the same vein as Michael Jackson's Bad except much less infectious. If you own this album, I'd get a music editor and just fade it out somewhere in its first third. Sure, there are some subtle texture changes as it progresses, but you're not going to miss anything important. This song screams to be shortened, and I think you'll be doing it a compliment! I mean... a three-minute version of this song would've been a B- easily. This is just too much of an adequate thing.

For Your Love C

Much better than the previous song! Yeah, it's still freakishly long (six minutes), but this song actually has chord progressions! ... A variety of chord changes are sort of few and far between, but I LIKE CHORD CHANGES! The instrumentation isn't bad at all... Again, whoever was in charge of the production did a pretty dang good job considering this was the stupid '80s. This would have been an easy B or B+, but as this song keeps going, I lower the score just a little bit. That Barry White signature mumbly part in the middle was the final nail in the coffin... And a decent song turned into a piece of poo.

There's a Place C

...Yeah, there is a place. There are many places. For the universe is very wide...... I haven't much of a good idea why I continue to review Barry White albums since I never cared for his style to begin with. And this song is exactly the same bedroom soul thing he's always been doing except with very minor '80s drum machine and bass-synth embellishments. The one good thing about it is those violins, which gives it a nice soothing atmosphere. The worst thing about it is the bland melody ... and the fact this is dragged on for more than seven minutes. (And, like a complete wuss, he fades out the ending ... geez, for seven minutes you think you would have time to come up with an ending!) Oh, and he mumbles in the middle of this, doing his dirty-old-man routine. (Although, I'm a little surprised I don't find this as tedious as I've found these songs in the past.) Why did so many pop stars think they had to fill up the entire CD? ... I guess they were just expressing excitement for the new format, or something.

Love is in Your Eyes C-

You're pushing me, fat man. Stop it! Here's is yet another FREAKING seven minute song that just repeats the same old thing forever and ever and ever. Making it worse is this is one of those soothing romantic ballads. I'm grateful that the melody is at least nicely done, and the whole atmosphere matches perfectly well with White's vocals. Again, it would have made a perfect three-minute song! Why are they doing this??? ...... Oh, but if you have the patience to stick around to the end, you can note that *gasp* there's a real ending. Sure, it's still a fade-out, but it's actually in a different groove than the rest of the song. Oh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! JOY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm Ready For Love C-

It takes about a minute for this song to start up, and Barry spends the beginning of it mumbling. I'm not even paying attention to him anymore. But look. This song is only five minutes long!!! ... Well, it's still a tedious romantic song, but I'm grateful they restrained themselves, because if it was extended for another three minutes, I would've been so bored outta my mind, I probably would've started gouging out my own eyeballs with my fingernails. Despite these sentiments, there are three things that keep this out of the D-range: 1) The flow is wonderful! 2) That minimal '80s drum actually seems cool. 3) I like that harp! (I'm reaching for things to like about this song ....... that's what I have to do to keep my eyeballs and fingernails intact.

Share D

On the other hand, I have no problem giving this dreary and tedious romantic song a D. I have to keep typing lest my fingernails come dangerously close to my eyeballs.... keep typing... keep typing... Well, the problem with this song is not just its seven-minute running length, because this song would've been a boring three-minute song, too! Although a three-minute incarnation of it would've been a C or possibly a C+ depending on which parts they cut out. The problem with it is it's just not interesting. There aren't any harps in here, either! Though I do like those lite funk guitars we hear in the background! ........... Did anyone else just hear Barry White say “blue panties?” I swear this man has the same obsession with blue panties that I have with melba toast! (....Oh crap, did I just say that?)

Who's The Fool D

I'm the fool. For BORING MYSELF TO DEATH WITH ANOTHER OVEREXTENDED ROMANTIC BALLAD. I mean, this song might have come off OK if the album was programmed a little better. I mean, do you have to stack all these romantic ballads all together all at once. DON'T YOU THINK SOME OF US WOULD GET A LITTLE TIRED OF IT???

The Right Night C-

Well, at least they're changing things up a little bit! I'm grateful that I'm not listening to another one of those blasted pop ballads! But I do wish someone would've thought of a less sluggish rhythm than this. And those horn keyboards to get annoying as hell.................................................... Plus, this song is more than six minutes long which was more than twice what it needed to be. BLAST YOU, CD FORMAT!


The Man is Back! (1989)

Read the full review:
The Man is Back!

Responsible C

Paula Abdul, Barry White, Paula Abdul, Barry White, Paula Abd--- Oops, I didn't realize you were listening. I was sitting here listening to a song called “Responsible” and couldn't decide if it was Barry White or Paula Abdul. But then I remembered that Paula Abdul never had a freakishly deep voice. Other than that, the two styles are exactly the same. A faux-R&B dance groove with those cheesy '80s snares. Yup...

Super Lover C

I suppose this is technically a different song than the last one, but that loud snare drum and these cookie-cutter grooves makes all these songs sounds alike! White's voice is sort of fun listening to amidst this late '80s nightmare and the melody is OK. The big problem with it is just that it repeats too much, but I dare anyone to show me a straight pop song from the late '80s that didn't repeat too much. I'm not disliking hearing this... This is like the musical equivalent of McDonalds.

L.A. My Kind of Place B

I think I heard a “Latin-crossover” Marc Anthony song that sounded exactly like this except probably not quite as fun. And FINALLY, they deliver a tune that might just be worth listening to for the first three minutes! Barry White's very smooth vocals provide surprisingly good contrast amidst that corny late '80s styled instrumentals. (Also, I'm sure White fans notice that despite the '80s instrumentation, we still hear those trademark strings...) The problem with this song comes when they decide to extend it two minutes past its staying power.

Follow That And See (Where it Leads Y'All) D-

Yucky. The groove doesn't sound too dissimilar to the previous track, but it has nowhere near the level of likability. The melody isn't catchy at all, and White comes off like he spent the whole night singing and he strained his voice. Making it worse is the groove, which is so monotonous that I'm about to tare out my hair as if it isn't falling out too quickly already!! With all due respect, Barry, this is donkey doodoo.

When Will I See You Again? C-

Barry White goes RETRO and begins this song with a cool, smooth groove and his signature bedroom mumbling. (Of course, it still contains a groove that dates it to the late '80s.) Sometimes his mumbling was terrible and annoying, but I tolerate it here mostly because it's done briefly. What offends me most about this song is that it's six minutes long and repetitive as hell. But to its credit, it does have a trance-like quality to a marginally successful degree.

I Wanna Do it Good To You D-

I'll tell ya... You sure did it good to *me*. You successfully created another incredibly repetitive that drives me absolutely bonkers! If you think you can stand six minutes of Barry White singing “I Wanna Do it Good To You” over and over again whilst some creepy breathing noises occurs in the background, then ....... all the more power to you. But as far as I'm concerned, this is no worse than the giant turd I laid in the toilet this morning.

It's Getting Harder All the Time C

Geez, this guy sure loves these randy songs! (I'm about 95 percent sure this song title was meant as a double entendre.) And, again, he proves that he still hadn't grown out of doing those horrible mumbling sequences at the start of his songs. ...... But, as I'm listening to this track, I notice something pretty weird......... HEY! WHERE IS THE TERRIBLE '80S INSTRUMENTATION???? This whole song consists of White's smooth bedroom soul singing, synth violins, an electric piano and non-intrusive drums. ...Hey, this is just like his '70s songs! ... Unfortunately, Barry White wasn't that good in the '80s...

Don't Let Go D

And he *doesn't* let go. For 10 bloody minutes. I've already grown tired of his formula at this point of the album, and the fact that he makes me sit through 10 minutes of the same thing is painful! He begins this thing with the mumbles. The rest of the song is an incredibly dreary, REPETITIVE bedroom soul outing. I would normally give such a thing an F, but to its credit, I could imagine something much, much worse. At least White has a few moments where he sounds like he's *singing* as opposed to just trying to get by. And there's something nice about those overextended, piddly piano solos. But this song really fails where it was designed to succeed. This is a sleeping pill; not an aphrodisiac!

Loves Interlude / Goodnight My Love C-

FOR ONCE IN YOUR LIFE, THROW YOUR MUMBLES IN THE WASTE BASKET WHERE THEY BELONG. YOUR MUMBLING WORKED FOR ABOUT 10 SECONDS 15 YEARS AGO, AND NOBODY'S BUYING IT?? ...... (Don't you just love it how I think I can change history by typing in capital letters?) After that, it's about six minutes worth of yet another tired bedroom soul song. It's one of the better ones on the album, but it's still pretty dreary and unpleasant. I'm finished typing words about this.


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