Oftentimes, U.K. chart success does not necessarily mean stateside success, as is evident with artists such as Kylie Minogue, Cliff Richard, Simply Red, Robbie Williams, and, in this case, the warm-voiced, anti-diva British soul/pop singer/songwriter Gabrielle, the recipient of 1997's Brit Award for Best British Female Vocalist. Gabrielle scored with an amazing run of hits in Europe, but only one true hit in the U.S. with "Dreams." All of her charted singles are assembled on Dreams Can Come True: Greatest Hits, Vol. 1, a fantastic collection of truly timeless, fad-free music -- upbeat, positive songs which could have been hits 30 years before this album's release and will sound just as good 30 years later. Included is her signature hit, "Dreams," and her other U.K. chart-topper, 2000's feel-good anthem "Rise." All of her Top Ten U.K. hits are represented, including the nostalgic, Motown-tinged "Going Nowhere" and "When a Woman," the Burt Bacharach-ish "Give Me a Little More Time," the ballad duet with East 17 "If You Ever" (originally a massive stateside hit for '90s American vocal quartet Shai), her stellar remake of Dionne Warwick's "Walk on By," and the funky "Sunshine." Another standout is the gorgeous melancholy ballad "Should I Stay," which wasn't as big a hit as the aforementioned singles. Three new songs are thrown into the mix, those being the lovely "Out of Reach" (from the film Bridget Jones' Diary), the single "Don't Need the Sun to Shine," and the ballad "If I Walked Away." Buyers beware, however, because certain pressings of this album do not include "Walk on By" and the soul-lite of "I Wish," which was actually a minor U.S. hit (and her follow-up to "Dreams"). From start to finish, Dreams Can Come True is a completely accurate representation of Gabrielle's successful career, and truly brings to light just how much great music the U.S.A. has been missing out on.
AllMusic Review by Jose F. Promis
feat: East 17