Arielle Dombasle

Amor Amor

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Arielle Dombasle is a French film actress with more than 50 movies to her credit, and now she's trying her hand as a kind of torch singer. The vintage material and arrangements on Amor Amor certainly evoke an era of sophisticated bands and witty and heartfelt material, be it the classic "As Time Goes By" or "Quireme." With her breathy voice and accent -- and singing in both Spanish and English -- Dombasle makes the most of her abilities to generate a little heat and sensuality, and it helps that much of the material is familiar, like "Cuando Calienta el Sol." But, frankly, her interpretations of the standards don't bear comparison with the greats, even when she duets on "Quizas, Quizas, Quizas" with Julio Iglesias. And her treatment of "Rhum and Coca-Cola" falls flat -- it's not the Andrews Sisters and it's definitely not calypso. While it aims at being nostalgically chic, with several exotic shades of Cuba in some of the arrangements, it sadly never quite succeeds.

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