Crystal Waters

Crystal Waters

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Crystal Waters scored a surprise Top Ten hit in 1991 with the quirky dance smash "Gypsy Woman (She's Homeless)" (from her debut album Surprise) and achieved similar success with the dance club classic "100% Pure Love" (from the excellent 1994 release Storyteller.) Although not much of a singer (possessing a thin voice that lacks range), Waters is one of the few dance divas responsible for writing or co-writing her own songs, and her first two albums were surprisingly consistent, surrounding the hit singles with songs that were equally engaging. 1997's Crystal Waters continues the trend set by its predecessors -- fluffy, R&B flavored dance/pop -- but the album fails to offer anything new. Waters scored a minor hit single from the album with the Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis-produced "Say...If You Feel Alright," which is just as good as anything from Storyteller. "Just a Freak" is another upbeat dance/pop confection (featuring a vocal cameo by none other than cross-dressing basketball bad-boy Dennis Rodman), and "Mama Told Me" is another guaranteed dancefloor filler. But despite an assortment of catchy tunes and an attempt to repeat the formula that made Surprise and Storyteller successful, most of the material on Crystal Waters is utterly disposable, and the album is nothing more than a rehash of the first two albums. And incorporating the chorus of Dead or Alive's hit "You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)" in "Spin Me" is unnecessary and unforgivable. Crystal Waters is a talented singer/songwriter who created two enduring dance club classics in "Gypsy Woman" and "100% Pure Love." But Crystal Waters suggests an artist recycling old ideas and failing to grow artistically. As a result, the album bombed, and Waters was eventually dropped from Polygram Records.

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