Whitney Houston

Heartbreak Hotel

  • AllMusic Rating
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

Whitney Houston's comeback album, My Love Is Your Love, first appeared to be a stiff. The first single, the critically slammed duet with Mariah Carey, "When You Believe," from the Prince of Egypt soundtrack, flopped, but its follow-up, "Heartbreak Hotel," quietly became a thunderous hit, peaking at number two on the pop charts and topping the dance charts. The maxi-single also featured remixes of its B-side, "It's Not Right But It's Okay," which later became its own single and a huge hit in its own right. "Heartbreak Hotel" teamed Whitney with two highly successful, younger, contemporary R&B singers: Faith Evans and Kelly Price. The result was a sassy, soulful trio wailing about a man who "done them wrong," and the song was a smash. The video featured Whitney looking more stunning than ever, and singing with a highly effective bite and bitterness that had never been present in her music before. However, the song was also highly derivative -- the chorus was virtually indistinguishable from Wham's "Careless Whisper," and the verses echoed Something for the People's "My Love Is the Shhh...." No matter, the public did not seem to notice, or at least didn't seem to care. Both the edit of the album version and the edit of the Hex Hector mix later resurfaced on her Greatest Hits collection. And, finally, this single featured several remixes of the fiery "It's Not Right But It's Okay." The "Thunderpuss Radio Mix" became the definitive hit version of the song, and is included here, as well as the full-length club mix and a dub version. Also here is the sleek, Hi-NRG Johnny Vicious "Radio Mix," the longer and aptly titled Johnny Vicious "Momentous Mix," and a dizzying Johnny Vicious dub (which features bells!). However, this song was issued as its own single several months later. That disc did not include the Johnny Vicious mixes, but did include the radio mix and full-length club mix of the Thunderpuss version. This single, for when it was released, was a fantastically packaged slice of Whitney-ness at her most diva-esque.

blue highlight denotes track pick