So Cheryl’s ditched her second name – in a bid the shake off any reminders of her errant ex-husband? To banish any lingering memories of her previous (middling) musical offerings? To put herself in the Madonna/Rihanna iconic one-name-is-enough category?
Whatever her reasons for lobbing Cole off her album cover, Cheryl’s A Million Lights is guaranteed to hit the top spot, thanks to our fascination with the Newcastle-born reality TV show winner. Like, love or loathe her, the fact is she covers more inches of the tabloid newspapers then I’ve had hot dinners, and believe me, mama Byrne is a very good cook.
So are in we in for a treat from the "nation’s sweetheart"? Sadly not - although there are a couple of tracks that provide a little relief from the monotonous, repetitive lyrics. It’s a pity because the album literally has a list of who’s who in producing on its credits. From Calvin Harris ravey synths on Call My Name, to Panther’s thumping bassline on Girl in the Mirror. Alex Kid penned one the best tracks on the album the very catchy Under the Sun. There are also contributions from HyGrade and Dada Life as well as Will.I.Am (obviously).
Ghetto Life which was penned by critically acclaimed singer-song writer Lana Del Ray starts of a sultry track leaving room for Cheryl’s voice to grown and build, but it doesn’t and ends up being a bit of a washout, with irritating line "drop it like it’s hot" repeated one too many times.
Last One Standing on the other hand makes use of repetition much better and has an infectious beat that will have you turning the dial up on the radio.
Sexy Den a Mutha, has all the makings of a great summer dance tune, but Cheryl’s voice is just not strong enough to sell it – in fact this is something that could be said for the album over all. There are sparks of good pop music there, but it just needs some more oomph. It’s a good thing she is about to reunite with the four other voices from Girls Aloud as Cheryl is in danger of fading into the background.