Jooliet - “Reflections of Love”

Concerto Records
2007 (1386)

The Concerto Productions branched out as a record company last year with a few simultaneous releases. The European distribution of the company seems to be very limited, judging by the fact that almost no retailer carries their albums! So due this very reason Jooliet's album is the first Concerto album that I'm reviewing. Jooliet, a young female artist has released her debut album entitled "Reflections of Love", featuring work by mainly Jooliet herself along with Erwin Khachikian, Babak Roozbeh, Schubert Avakian, Vahan Iskandaryan and Shahram Azar. The album features 9 tracks.

Opening ROCKy with a distinctive Khachikian flavour, musically Jooliet promises a lot with "Aayeneh" and it will be interesting to see how much of it is kept throughout the album! A nice opener but lacks the needed boost in its chorus, vocally.

"Eshghe To" is a mid-tempo DANCE song a la Avakian. Blending the Eastern spices with European ingredients! Smooth!

Next comes an NRG song with a Euro-POP overtone and a an undertone of JAZZ-FUSION. The song manages to keep the relevance to Jooliet's voice despite its rapid nature!

Going ROCK once again with a symphonic twist! "Emshab" is nice song with a CONTINENTAL flow.

Turning LATINO-POP, "Bargard" takes a CATCHY course! I wish the arrangement had been more LUSH, especially around the chorus, then again it might have overpowered Jooliet's voice!

A BANDARI song with the SANDY flavour wasn't what I had expected to hear on Jooliet's album! Rather stunned to be honest ...! And don't know whether its a personal choice or a commercial manoeuvre, whatever it is "Raghse Bandar" is very unbecoming and misplaced in this album! "Pasho tekonesh bede, tekoon tekoonesh bede"!? ... hmmmm!

Just when I had started to think that we had endured the commercial one-off of the album in a surreal experience a 6/8 song pops up and basically changes my entire picture of Jooliet and her debut! Thankfully the PROGRESSIVE arrangement of Schubert makes "Yeki Talabet" rather FRESH and strangely its also the most suiting song for Jooliet's vocal performance so far! Maybe this is the genre and style she should pursue?!

"Bad boys, bad boys! Whatcha gonna do ..."! Well not really but its still a BAD BOY Jooliet is singing about in the very SANDY-an "Pesare Bad"! At this point I'm no longer surprised and can actually enjoy and appreciate the FRESH theme the song delivers for a female Iranian singer. Its just funny how you can almost hear Shahram Azar singing this song while Jooliet simulates his ornamentation and style down to details!

The album wraps up with a DANCE REMIX of the opener "Aayene".

When I first saw Jooliet it was in her music video for "Aayene" and judging by the song and her image in that particular video I thought that I was FINALLY witnessing the arrival of the ROCK heroine I've always wished to come and rock the foundations of the Iranian industry!! Or at least its generic categorization of female artists. But sadly the first look was deceiving and Jooliet was more of a mainstream POP artist rather than a rebellious ROCKER! Or at least not made up her mind which role to take on yet. And the stylistic schizophrenia of this album is best to convey that, even though the generic variety is also provided. I personally have nothing against either directions, as long as the crossover is done smoothly and calculatedly! I just was, least said, chocked and found it a bit confusing! Perhaps it would have been more consistent to choose one direction for the debut and another for the next. That is "if" these commercially oriented songs weren't imposed by the label, however having them last on the track-list doesn't really support such theory! Either way I really appreciate the more experimental features of the album, even though Jooliet's voice indirectly limited them. I like the pleasant and soothing tone of her voice, however it is a frail voice that needs to be taken into consideration and accommodation when accompanied by the music! The slightest boost could overpower it and the arrangers and producers of the album have all been enough considerate and cautious not to let it happen. At the cost of the music! There are moments and choruses, to be exactly, where one wishes for some BOOST and CLIMAX for the song to take off and burst, something which doesn't and cant happen if the music is to serve its singer right! Another weak point of this album is its design and presentation, I don't know how many times I have stressed the importance of it yet every second album released portrays its female artist in a rather unflattering way!

Altogether “Reflections of Love” is a GOOD debut that shows an artist with a great deal of "unfolded" talent and potential! It still feels a bit rough around the edges but I'm sure that there is an uncut gem hidden inside, waiting to be polished by the hands of time and experience!

Note: thanks to Amir A. for submitting the album for reviewing.

Overall Performance: ++
Artistic Ambition: ++
Commercial Potential: +
Technical Quality: ++
Aesthetic Presentation: ---
Ethical Adherence: +++
[ +++ > --- ]

Review by: Pourya E.

Reviews described herein are mere opinions, and must be construed in that manner only! In other words they are not absolute!