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Sound Check

2/10/2016

FoxesFoxes
“All I Need”
Sign of the Times

In the wake of David Bowie’s untimely return to his home planet, it is sad to note that the type of infectious, world-changing glam-pop that Bowie helped pioneer is more or less dead. “Pop” nowadays is a light, disposable thing that rarely makes the effort to be anything more than a money-making endeavor. Then along came Foxes and her breakout single, “Body Talk.” Now, let’s be square: I am not comparing Foxes to Bowie. But “All I Need” comes closer to owning that giant, late ’70s feel of excellent glam pop. There are still moments of weakness, and tracks like “Amazing” are still largely disposable, but there is so much here for pop fans to like — “Cruel,” “If You Leave Me Now,” the afore-mentioned “Body Talk” — that the end result is a genuinely enjoyable experience. CV

Elton JohnElton John
“Wonderful Crazy Night”
Island

Lest you think that Sir Elton John — now 68 years old — is ready to be relegated to the scrap heap of nostalgia acts, “Wonderful Crazy Night” is here to alert you to how wrong you are. John and longtime collaborator Bernie Taupin reunited with legendary producer T-Bone Burnett and created an album with a freewheeling feel that nods back to the very best that John had produced while giving us a new look at the man’s songwriting prowess and musical ability. The piano is pushed to the forefront, of course, but John’s vocals have not been dimmed by the passage of time. Every bit as strong as when he released albums like “21 at 33,” John’s voice has added a layer of depth that he seems to be able to turn on and off at will, giving songs like “Blue Wonderful” incredible emotional weight. CV

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