December 13, 2006

Gwen Stefani
The Sweet Escape

By Gabriel Leong
Our Rating: 6/10

Choice Cut : ''The Sweet Escape,'' ''Early Winter,'' ''4 In The Morning,'' ''U Started It,'' ''Wonderful Life''

While working on her successful solo debut, Gwen Stefani apparently had so much material left over it didn't take her too long to come up with her follow up album, The Sweet Escape.

Not venturing too far from the successful formulae of Love. Angel. Music. Baby., "Wind It Up" -- the first single off The Sweet Escape -- sounds like a less infectious cousin of "Hollaback Girl." But then again, sampling "The Lonely Goatherd" in any song is never an easy feat, and Pharrell does drum up some fancy beats to keep it fun and fluffy.

The song to look out for in this album is "The Sweet Escape," featuring rising hip-hop artist Akon. With a cheerful upbeat melody, Gwen's pleading vocals as she sings for forgiveness and wanting to be a better girlfriend makes her very hard to hate.

Other tracks to look out for include "Early Winter," a Tim Rice-Oxley (Keane) collaboration, and "Wonderful Life," a heavily synthesised number that sounds like something from the Pet Shop Boys, but is in reality a track co-written by Linda Perry.

It's all good to see Gwen having a great solo career but there are many out there who can't wait to see her get back in the studio with No Doubt. It's easy to see why, since the track co-written with Tony Kanal, "4 In The Morning," is by far one of the best in the album.

User Reviews
Reviewer: gnrrocks Tuesday 27 March, 2007    Rating: 8 / 10

" The Sweet Escape has a deep meaning in it, and the story it's kinda like my girlfriend relationship with me, and there's a freaking akon even though he only sings a little."

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