The Company


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In 1994, Philippine vocal group the Company released their third album Harmony. The group consists of three male and three female singers, none of whom plays instruments. The group's two prior albums (this excludes 1993's Christmas Company) contain a mixture of easy-listening/middle-of-the-road music -- styles quite popular in the Philippines -- and adventurous, jazz-inflected material. Harmony, however, is dominated by slow, easy-listening material (not even exciting enough to be called middle-of-the-road), though a few songs retain a degree of adventurousness. An especially daring song is the title track, which works off a soulful, gospel-inflected groove, anchored by a strong, pulsating bassline. Its vocal arrangement is exciting and complex, and the group handles it smoothly, and seems to have fun doing so. Another exciting song, "You Don't Look Good in Blue," opens on bossa nova-styled acoustic guitar, providing a backdrop for Brazilian "carnaval" noises. The song is upbeat and swings, and the group handles it suavely. "Kanin, Ulam, Sabaw, At Ikaw" (trans: Cooked Rice, Main Course, Soup and You) opens on sensuous, jazzy piano and segues into an entertaining vocal romp, containing various vocal gyrations stitched seamlessly together; the effect is reminiscent of American vocal jazz group the Manhattan Transfer. Most of the material on Harmony isn't nearly as daring as the three previously mentioned songs, and tunes such as the slow, easy-listening, "Kahit Ika'Y Panaginip Lang" (trans: Even If You're Only a Dream), "Pakisabi Na Lang" (trans: Would You Please Say), and "Nanonood Ang Ulap" (trans: The Cloud Is Watching), among others, move at a lackluster pace.

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