Verdict: 3.5 / 5
Doing covers of pop and jazz classics works well for Bublé but the danger in not having his own classics, may be that as time progresses his memory will fade into obscurity. Later generations, when looking back at big band artists, will look to the ones we cite as pioneers today, Sinatra, Martin, Cole, and Davis Jr. to name a few. Unlike Bublé’s enjoyable but forgettable originals, old crooners had sterling originals interspersed with covers. I doubt singers will be covering Michael’s originals as much as he covers the old guard’s original material. This does not deny the man’s obvious singing talents. On ‘To Be Loved’ his singing is top class. The album is highly enjoyable; each song is well executed and while the four originals are not in the same league as the ten covers, each song, cover or original, offers something special for the listener.
The only problem on the album is the bizarre mix of genres. The album starts strong with the jazz classic, ‘You make me feel so Young’. Then violently, the music segues from jazz to pop rock on the original composition, ‘It’s a Beautiful Day’. In its genre splicing experiments the album leaps off a cliff by adding soul and r&b via the Bee Gee’s classic, ‘To Love Somebody’ and Smokey Robinson’s, ‘Who’s Lovin’ You’. What made them decide to be so extreme in their juxtapositions only they know? A very uncomfortable change of moods ensue as the album shifts and oscillates between jazz, pop, rock, soul and R&B. It is only on the strength of the songs that everything manages to work despite the vast differences in style.
Despite being a tossed salad of genres, fans will love this album and those unfamiliar or not interested in Bublé will be tapping their foot or singing along when their family or spouse cranks up this album around the house or in the car.