MUSIC REVIEW

AKUHSTIC
Review from ALL MUSIC GUIDE

www.allmusic.com

In 1999, female Philippine singer Kuh Ledesma released Akuhstic. Although the musical accompaniment isn't entirely acoustic, as one might expect from the title, the music is mellow and the acoustic guitar is evident, though it doesn't dominate. There are a number of international remakes here, including Hall & Oates' "One on One," Todd Rundgren's "Hello It's Me," and Michael Jackson's "Got to Be There," among others. Kuh Ledesma sings "Hello It's Me" in a slow, penetrating style that's much different from the original. Her rendition of Elvis Presley's "Can't Help Falling in Love" features a gentle, acoustic-styled accompaniment, and she sings the song's bridge a half step up from the original melody, which makes the song distinctive and not a note-for-note remake. Kuh Ledesma performs Hall and Oates' "One on One" in a looser style than usual; on previous albums, she has given a sophisticated, measured approach to the middle-of-the-road repertoire. She also sounds loose on Stevie Wonder's "Creepin'" and "Overjoyed," as well as David Soul's "Don't Give Up on Us." She sounds suave on "Paano" (How). "Overjoyed" is a moderately spirited, middle-of-the-road love song that has the potential to be popular in the Philippines, but the song is one of Stevie Wonder's weaker efforts. Throughout the album, Kuh Ledesma sings in a confident manner, and her efforts at loosening up on some songs are successful. This is an enjoyable, if not essential, album. David Gonzales


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