"Entertaining, hip, recent hit songs" is the phrase that best describes the tracks in this album. "Max 7" has got its hands on the pulse of current popular music.
The collection starts with the lilting Corrs sisters waiting to go "Breathless", a track off their latest album, "In Blue". Five's "We Will Rock You" is a so-so attempt at a remake of the song released by Queen in 1977. Five has flung in a bit of rap and some impressive guitar, but the track still pales in comparison to the original.
"Maria Maria", a groovy song by Santana, has become famous after the coverage it has received on TV and radio. Madonna's "American Pie" is here too, in the Richard "Humpty" Radio Mix Version. The track has been mixed well; with an enhanced beat and rhythm, it makes you want to dance. All Saints' "Pure Shores", a song that wound its way onto the original soundtrack of "The Beach", is listenable and the group's vocal harmony is near perfect.
Mariah Carey and Westlife's version of "Against All Odds (Take A Look At Me)", sounds pretty good too; however, the songstress has dominated the track and reaches her predictably high pitch at the end of it. Christina Aguilera's "I Turn To You" is the one slow track on the album; sung in a husky voice, the lyrics make more sense than those of most other teen singers.
Jessica Simpson's "I Think I'm In Love With You" is just the kind of breezy track to drive twelve- to fourteen-year olds crazy with excitement. Mandy Moore's "I Wanna Be With You" is a tuneful ballad in what might very well become her trademark - a breathy, sighing voice.
Jennifer Lopez's "Let's Get Loud", a Latin pop-dance track, will shake you up and get you moving with its pounding drums and fun carnival-music touch. "Last One Standing" by Girl Thing is a double-edged song that speaks of the eventual popularity and success of the girl group as well as the coming of an era where women will rule.
Two things about the album that surprised this listener - where is that mole-bearing Latino, Julio Iglesias? And how come the album is dominated solely by female singers?This article was first published on 29 Nov 2000.