“My World” sampler – Bryn Christopher

2 stars (out of 5)

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Bryn ChristopherThe main purpose of an album sampler is to create interest in the artist and their album and to encourage us to part with our readies to buy the full album (or to convince DJs and other tastemakers that they should persuade us to buy it). In this case it’s not strictly an album sampler because 2 of the 4 tracks are described as “non-album tracks”, which looks like an attempt to demonstrate the breadth of Bryn Christopher’s abilities.

He undoubtedly has an incredible voice, but is that enough? The music business has a habit of chewing up and spitting out incredibly talented vocalists (Lemar, for example), so there has to be something else to back it up. The two self-penned songs here are acceptable but not exceptional and “The Quest” is over-wrought and over-produced, while “My Kinda Woman” is filled with all of the usual romantic song clichés, musical and lyrical.

The 2 acoustic songs are better although “I’ve Been Loving You Too Long” (an Otis Redding original) suffers from the Whitney Syndrome of hitting half a dozen notes around the target before finally settling on the right one. “Sunny” (another cover) works much better because of the simplicity of the vocal performance which demonstrates how that it’s not all about power and histrionics.

This sampler seems to be all about pressing all the right buttons and ticking all the right boxes in search of success in 2008 and Bryn Christopher’s undoubted talent deserves much better than that.