ARTIST OF THE MONTH: MARIAH CAREY
After the success of her album "Rainbow," Mariah Carey released her eighth studio album "Glitter" on August 18, 2001, and it seemed as her career was over. What should have been a glorious victory for one of the best-selling musicians of all time, the musical movie "Glitter" turned into a nightmare. This is a notable album for Mariah's first release on Virgin records following her exit from Columbia. Bizarre promotional appearances and a brief hospitalization pushed the soundtrack from its original date of August 21st to September 11th, a day we all would like to forget.
Carey’s dive into ‘80s retro seems natural, thanks in part to the fact that she recruited era veterans Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis to produce half of the album. The album’s first single, “Loverboy.” is a super-sexed abstraction of Carey’s time-tested uptempo hit formula—including “Emotions,” “Dreamlover,” and “Fantasy." The song covers Cameo's synth-funk track "Candy," which personifies Carey’s ambition like no other song she’s ever recorded. She wanted to make a cover of Yellow Magic Orchestra's "Firecracker," but that was essentially stolen by her ex Tommy Mottola and J-Lo. It features Da Brat, who absolutely murders her verse, and Mystikal and Busta bring great energy to their contributions.
One of the highlights of "Glitter" is the song "Didn't Mean To Turn You On" is one of the best songs on the album as it is a cover of a song that the executive producers of the album, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, originally wrote and produced in 1984. Rather than recreate and update the music, they have Mariah sing over the original instrumental, which hey if it works, then why not. And of course. no, Mariah's album is complete without ballads, which I consider to be some of Mariah's best. "Never too far" is one of Mariah's best ballads, without a doubt. It's big, grand, and Mariah goes from a soft croon to a mammoth belt, holds a note which goes on forever, and ends with her signature whistle.
The 12 track album, one of which is a remix, was standard fare for Mariah albums. But the abundance of guest features and half of the songs having the same sound and vibe. One thing you have to give Mariah credit for was privy to bringing the 80s sound back before it became 'a thing' some years after its release. Though the album may not have sparkled as it should due to many factors, it is not a complete mess either, as there are genuinely a lot of great moments on this album.