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Music Review

Alexandra Burke - Overcome

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Label: Sony

Year: 2009

Duration: 43 minutes

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Better to come

Take away the 'X Factor' backstory and how far would Alexandra Burke go as just another singer with a debut album? Top of the charts or Top 20? The latter, but while there's a big issue with her finding her own identity away from the pack, Burke shows enough here to make you think that she can get more than two Christmases out of the music industry.

The biggest problem with 'Overcome' is that it makes Burke a victim of formula with music that sounds like it came straight off a laptop and the production equivalent of flatpack shelving - it works on 'Bad Boys' and 'Good Night Good Morning' but is less successful elsewhere.

The best thing for Burke's voice and career would be for the handlers to have more faith and stick her in the studio with a real band all the time and strip away a few layers of the gloss. On the retro sounds of 'Bury Me' and 'You Broke My Heart' she is given the chance to let rip and she pulls it off, while the strings and piano on 'They Don't Know' also highlight one of things that's hard to hear through the slickness: soul.

There's no need for Burke to keep making this record, and despite the flaws, 'Overcome' proves one thing: we haven't heard the best of her yet.

Harry Guerin

Tracklisting: Bad Boys (featuring Flo Rida) - Good Night Good Morning (featuring Ne-Yo) - The Silence - All Night Long - Bury Me (6 Feet Under) - Broken Heels - Dumb - Overcome - Gotta Go - You Broke My Heart - Nothing but the Girl - They Don't Know - Hallelujah (Bonus Track)

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