David’s been champing at the bit to get his ears around the new Shania Twain album ‘Now’ for a review.
And today, he gets his opportunity to have his say.
I will be the first to admit that I’m a huge fan of Shania Twain. Her music from the late ’90s into the early 2000s were anthems for many people, myself included.
But then Shania disappeared. Personal dramas and issues with her voice meant she was out of the spotlight and it was a huge loss to the music scene.
After finding her voice again and completing a series of successful concerts in Vegas plus a North American tour, she’s back with a brand new album of new material in the form of ‘Now’; her first in 15 years.
Let me highlight the obvious : Shania’s voice has changed and the magic her ex-husband and former producer Mutt Lange brought to her previous albums has disappeared. Shania’s voice is a lot raspier and at times sounds forced.
Part of this is from the anguish she is releasing through her songs, but a lot of it is from the vocal troubles she’s faced. Combined with the breakdown of her marriage to her aforementioned former producer, it’s meant that she has had to find her own artistic voice again too. Happily, neither of these things are detrimental to the quality of ‘Now’.
Shania has co-written every single track and it’s clear this is her voice. Working with a host of new producers and writers, the songs are raw, real and powerful.
Lead single ‘Life’s About To Get Good’ is an example of Shania’s redemption. Uplifting and a real insight to the pain she’s faced, you get a look into how far she’s come with what feels like a growth mindset.
Where Shania continues to shine is on the upbeat country rock tinged songs like ‘We Got Something They Don’t’. It’s got power behind its catchy chorus which means you can’t help singing along to it.
‘Swingin With My Eyes Closed’ is another rocking tune and an excellent way to open the album. It’s got a vibrancy to it that is much needed.
My favourite moment on ‘Now’ comes in the form of ballad ‘Soldier’. Recently sharing on social media that this song was one of the more emotionally challenging songs to write, it’s a stunning piece of songwriting. Shania sounds amazing and the musical arrangements have been beautifully crafted. Shania and does an excellent job in reminding you of just how good she is – if you had forgotten.
Throughout the rest of the album, there are some more gems on offer.
‘I’m Alright’ is an enjoyable listen and ‘Who’s Gonna Be Your Girl’ has you singing along by the end of the first chorus. Shania’s brand of country rock-pop is truly hers and a pleasure to listen to.
Overall, I’m beyond happy she is back. The only thing missing so far is a tour announcement down under. So if you’re reading Shania, we are beyond excited to welcome you here (should you decide to visit these shores).
For ‘Now’, however, your new album will suffice very nicely thankyou.
VERDICT : 4/5.
MUST LISTEN : Who’s Gonna Be Your Girl, I’m Alright, We Got Something They Don’t, Soldier.