The Thrill of it All (Capi­tol)

Irish Independent - Weekend Review - - FRONT PAGE -

It’s hard to be thrilled when ex­posed to Smith’s lat­est ex­er­cise in tick­ing all the boxes. His songs are pre­ci­sion­tooled to ap­peal to a mass mar­ket and very lit­tle that’s in­ter­est­ing and in­no­va­tive has sur­vived. His soul­ful voice — al­ways a spe­cial in­stru­ment — sounds fine and dandy here, but the re­la­tion­ship-gone-to-pot songs rarely stray above the pedes­trian. Even the pres­ence of such al­chemists as Tim­ba­land fail to rus­tle up the req­ui­site magic.

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