Leon Jackson Right Now Review

Album. Released 2008.  

BBC Review

A truly slick and accomplished debut.

Lucy Davies 2008

Oh, this album has all the ingredients of something many would love to hate: it's by an X Factor winner and it's in the style of Harry Connick Jr, Michael Buble, and all those Irish man-bands' tributes to Frank, Tony etc.

It's also taken over a year since Leon's first single to come up with, so many will be saying ''Leon who?''.

It's a brave move in the openly cynical world of the nationwide talent contest to expect those sitting on the sofa to remember one year's winner to the next, but it's paid off.

Looking rather older and sporting suspiciously photoshopped cheekbone chisels, the cheeky chappy's voice is also surprisingly mature and smooth as a baby's... He's surrounded by equally slick orchestration, which is light of touch and spaciously balanced.

Incredibly, given that most tracks are ballads, underpinned by piano with soaring violins, the album neatly avoids overblown territory, which must be credited to Jackson's vocal control, never over-singing.

Opener and first single Don't Call This Love is complete with chimes and full of force, though it's not certain that it's charismatic enough to knock Peter Kay’s Winner's song off the top spot.

Creative is a sassy, rumba-rhythmed number where Leon soars above, hinting at his prowess in the boudoir, this is easily the most memorable original track here.

While the lyrics for Star Gazing may be rather saccharine - rhyming ''star gazing'' with ''amazing'', is a bit too much to take - the pace and structure, (along with all-important key change) makes it pretty special - which can be said about all the tracks here.

The production throughout is flawless, and it's almost impossible to find fault. The only gripe worth making is that it would be good to hear something more pared-down, in contrast to the strings, piano, off-beat drums formula which pervade the entire record.

A truly slick and accomplished debut.

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