Amii Stewart


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True, the arrangements and lyrics of the songs on Magic sometimes suffer from overused clich├ęs, but the brightness of the players and Stewart's delivery are quite buoyant and uplifting, easily overshadowing the predictability. The pace is a consistently mid-tempo one, with the first side concentrating on R&B- and club-oriented grooves and the second utilizing slight rock and blues nuances. Especially grabbing are "Fly on the Wall" and "Now That We're Here"; however, it's the closing number, "Le Storie Lunghe," that truly wreaks emotion. Here, Stewart belts for a change -- and proves that she chooses only the best times to do it. She also makes her debut as producer here, working with David Romani to craft a cohesive sound. The only inexcusable fallacy is "There Has Got to Be a Way," an obvious rip-off of Mariah Carey's 1990 tune of the same name.

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