You're Only Lonely

You're Only Lonely

4.4 7
by Raul Malo
     
 

Teaming with producer Peter Asher, master of lush but discreet country-pop productions, Raul Malo tackles some standards and near-standards, adds a stirring, self-penned Latin number, and works some interpretive brilliance on each and every tune. By the end of the disc, he's staked his own claim on songs that seem inextricably linked to their original purveyors. Malo,… See more details below

Overview

Teaming with producer Peter Asher, master of lush but discreet country-pop productions, Raul Malo tackles some standards and near-standards, adds a stirring, self-penned Latin number, and works some interpretive brilliance on each and every tune. By the end of the disc, he's staked his own claim on songs that seem inextricably linked to their original purveyors. Malo, of course, possesses a big, bold, operatic tenor, but his real calling card is subtlety -- he can caress a lyric with a winsome delicacy unmatched by any other contemporary singer. And so he does in spectacular fashion here. For a sample of controlled passion of the most heart-wrenching order, check out the crystalline fragility of his falsetto laments in Harry Nilsson's "Remember." Elation and melancholy stroll side by side throughout the album as Malo expertly explores the game of love from a variety of perspectives, one moment crying out an urgent Roy Orbison-like entreaty in "Games Lovers Play"; at another, belting out his heart's deepest longings in his self-penned "For You," a driving, Latin-flavored burner complete with frothy percussion, full-bodied chanting and sizzling string parts; and even offering up a stately, gospel-rooted take on Willie Nelson's "Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground," dressed up by Asher in a Sunday arrangement complete with burbling organ and an all-female chorus. In a powerhouse display of duet vocalizing, Martina McBride joins Malo for a dramatic treatment of Randy Newman's poignant "Feels Like Home," their mesmerizing vocal trade-offs augmented by an a thunderous climactic arrangement that's a wash of cinematic strings and booming percussion. Malo even finds his own place in an understated piano bar treatment of Etta James's eternal "At Last." Awesome, in multiple dimensions.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Mark Deming
Raul Malo's voice is one of the great natural resources of American music, and anyone familiar with his work with the Mavericks or as a solo act is already aware that the man can seemingly sing anything he puts his mind to and make it sound wonderful. However, in many ways You're Only Lonely feels like a concerted effort to present him in a new light to a new audience. Produced by Peter Asher, best known for his work with Linda Ronstadt and James Taylor, You're Only Lonely dials down the country and Latin accents that have long been a large part of Malo's music in favor of smooth and elaborate MOR-style arrangements (complete with a shimmering string section) and a set list dotted with such familiar classics as "At Last," "Tomorrow Night," and "Games That Lover's Play." (Malo does get to tear into a solid Cuban-style number here, "For You," and covers Willie Nelson's wonderful "Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground," but there's no arguing that both numbers boast significantly more polish than they would have received on Malo's earlier projects.) Much as Linda Ronstadt's albums with arranger Nelson Riddle in the '80s (produced by Peter Asher) seemed designed to convince an older and more musically sophisticated audience that she was a "real" singer rather than just another rock & roll belter, You're Only Lonely plays as Malo's calling card to people wary of his country background, demonstrating he can sing supper club blues, standards and jazz-leaning ballads as well as anyone. Malo certainly handles this material with seasoned panache, his vocal chops are as solid as ever, and there are a few idiosyncratic but inspired song selections, including Harry Nilsson's nostalgic "Remember" and the early Bee Gees' hit "Run to Me." But for all the superlative craft displayed on You're Only Lonely, Asher's production has buffed most of the texture out of this music, and there's a sadly noticeable lack of passion in most of the performances; it's a collection of glorious surfaces that ring just a bit hollow, something you can't usually say about an album featuring Raul Malo.
Los Angeles Times - Randy Lewis
This is all about setting the mood for candlelight, Champagne and a cozy evening with the one you love -- or wish to.
San Francisco Chronicle - Joel Selvin
Malo's conviction and Asher's scrupulous production give the set a classic sound that stands outside time.

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Product Details

Release Date:
07/25/2006
Label:
Sanctuary Records
UPC:
0060768475229
catalogNumber:
84752
Rank:
3826

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Raul Malo   Primary Artist,Guitar,Soloist
Robert Bailey   Background Vocals
Charlie Bisharat   Violin
David Campbell   Conductor
Larry Corbett   Celli
Chad Cromwell   Drums
Joel Derouin   Violin,Concert Master
Earl Dumler   Oboe
Dan Dugmore   Pedal Steel Guitar,Slide Guitar,Soloist
Armen Garabedian   Violin
Berj Garabedian   Violin
Kenny Greenberg   Guitar,Soloist
Vicki Hampton   Background Vocals
Andy Martin   Trombone,Soloist
Gordon Mote   Keyboards
Josefina Vergara   Violin
Evan Wilson   Viola
Glen Caruba   Percussion
Natalie Leggett   Violin
Glen Warf   Bass
Sara Parkins   Violin
David R. Stone   Double Bass
Bob Becker   Viola
Robert Chevrier   Band
Eddie Perez   Guitar
Steve Richards   Celli
Kimberly Fleming   Background Vocals
Tom Lewis   Band
Mario de León   Violin

Technical Credits

Willie Nelson   Composer
Randy Newman   Composer
Harry Nilsson   Composer
Don Everly   Composer
Robin Gibb   Composer
Barry Gibb   Composer
Peter Asher   Producer
David Campbell   Orchestral Arrangements
Larry Corbett   Principal
Maurice Gibb   Composer
Mack Gordon   Composer
Raul Malo   Composer
George Massenburg   Engineer,Mastering
J.D. Souther   Composer
Harry Warren   Composer
Evan Wilson   Principal
Ron Sexsmith   Composer
Jason Lehning   Engineer
Eddie Snyder   Composer
Beth Middleworth   Art Direction
Sam Coslow   Composer
Gunter Loose   Composer
Alan Miller   Composer
Vance Powell   Engineer
Will Grosz   Composer
Jay Ruston   Engineer

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