Charice

Charice

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Charice’s first U.S. album follows performances on talent competitions in her native Philippines and South Korea, popular YouTube clips, appearances on The Ellen DeGeneres Show and The Oprah Winfrey Show, and a pair of releases that went platinum in the Philippines. That it was released one day after her 18th birthday underscores the fact that, despite her age, she possesses a voice big enough to handle songs written by mentor David Foster, Diane Warren, and the Corrs. While it is remarkable that she can handle theatrical ballads as ably as her inspirations (Whitney, Celine, Mariah) did early in their careers, her self-titled album is so densely packed with deeply felt, chest-pounding material that it comes across as relentlessly overwrought. “You are the best that ever happened to my heart and to my soul,” a line from a song titled “All That I Need to Survive,” is about as light as it gets. As a showcase for a teenage powerhouse vocalist, Charice does succeed, but a more balanced mix of heart-heavy and upbeat material would have made the desired Whitney and Mariah comparisons more accurate.

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