Winehouse’s ‘Frank’ could use a little rehab

Kristen Kotz

Photo courtesy of Universal Records

Credit: Ron Soltys

Amy Winehouse


Released by Universal Records

Stater rating (out of five): ***

Let’s be Frank. Amy Winehouse’s re-release of her plantinum-selling 2003 debut album is far from stellar. The British singer of “Rehab” fame does redeem herself with a couple of solid blues-driven tracks on the album in the vintage soul style she is known for.

“I Heard Love is Blind” is the weakest song on the album, lacking any real focus. Winehouse’s vocals seem strained and clash with the guitar. The beginning of the song is painful to listen to.

One change on the new version of the album is that the track “You Sent Me Flying/Cherry” is split into two separate songs on the album. The song “Cherry” was a hidden track on the original album. The re-release also has two new tracks: “Brother” and “Mr. Magic.”

The song “(There is) No Greater Love” is one of the highlights of the album. It shows off Winehouse’s vocal range. It has a soft and soothing feel to it that is reminiscent of the 1940s jazz era. While the song is different from “Rehab,” it is enjoyable.

A slight departure from her typical style, “In My Bed” has a funky, hip-hop feel. It will surely have its listeners dancing to it. Another catchy song on the album is “Amy Amy Amy.” Its chorus is sure to get stuck in listeners’ heads.

“Take the Box” is another song that departs from the style of the song “Rehab.” This song is a heartfelt ballad about an angry girl that just broke up with her boyfriend. It is much slower and has a very mellow feel, while showcasing Winehouse’s vocal range and control. The lyrics will also ring true with those who have suffered a recent break-up.

Another weak point on the album is “October Sky.” While the song does showcase some of Winehouse’s scat singing ability at the end, her vocals are nasally and lack clarity. It is also hard to understand what she is saying at some points.

The song “F*** Me Pumps” contains the attitude Winehouse is known for, poking fun at women who wear too-tight clothes and hook-up with men that are much younger than them.

Frank does contain some strong language, so those that are easily offended might want to pass on it.

Despite the re-release, the album is still nothing special. While some songs showcase Winehouse’s vocal ability, others fall short. Don’t splurge on the whole album. Instead, purchase the songs “There is No Greater Love” and “Take the Box” online.

Contact all correspondent Kristen Kotz at [email protected].