Dance Into The Light (1996)


 
1.Dance Into the Light 2.That's What You Said 3.Lorenzo 4.Just Another Story 5.Love Police 6.Wear My Hat 7.It's in Your Eyes 8.Oughta Know By Now 9.Take Me Down 10.The Same Moon 11.River So Wide 12.No Matter Who 13.The Times They Are A-Changin'

 

After the dismal, dull, and dreary Both Sides, Collins fortunatly decided to retreat back to his original style that made many know and love him so well. Unfortunately, it was now 1996 and to say that times and tastes had changed in the music industry is a drastic understatement. No matter how big that artists had made it during the 1970s and 1980s, the 1990s made it clear that there was no place for these artists on the radio airwaves anymore. Therefore, Collins, like just about all of his counterparts, had to rely on so-so sales and became more of a nostolgia act than anything else.

The good news was this release was a little bit more true to form that made him so loveable in the first place. He got together with many artists that he performed with from his glory days and churned out a mixture of light pop ballads, up tempo dance numbers and other material that clearly would have been more well received ten years earlier. If anything negative could be said, consequently, is that this record is a bit behind the times. Songs such as Wear My Hat and River So Wide would have been revolutionary had they been released during an earlier period, but at this point it sounded too much like the ground that Paul Simon had broken during his "Graceland" period.

A couple of tunes stand out above the rest, Just Another Story has a very nice purposely stripped down jazz side that reflects the (now obligatory) social consciousness piece that is a warm welcomed Collins stamp. He wrote the song Lorenzo after Michaela "Lorenzo" Odone submitted Collins the lyrics (this song was based on a well received movie, "Lorenzo's Oil" that came out around 1992). Also, Collins pays homage to Bob Dylan's The Times They Are A-Changin' which is one of the better Dylan covers out there.

The rest of the disc is pleasurable, although for the most part fails to stand out as some of Collins' earlier work. Just because it didn't sell well or that it went ignored by the radio is clearly no indication of lack of quality. This one deserved a little bit better than what it got. The buyer should not be disappointed.

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