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Thread: Review: Feeling blown away by Carrie Underwood at Staples Center

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    Insane Carrie Fan Daraebe's Avatar
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    Review: Feeling blown away by Carrie Underwood at Staples Center

    Carrie Underwood’s choice of a tornado as the central image for her current "Blown Away" album and tour became something of a double-edged sword as her show unfolded Tuesday at Staples Center in Los Angeles.
    On one hand, it’s a powerful symbol of a force of nature analogous to Underwood’s titanium pipes, which at times seemed capable of filling the arena with no help from a PA system.

    On the other, a tornado is a force beyond human control that typically leaves a trail of destruction wherever it touches down, a trait Underwood also shared throughout a show that opened at maximum voltage and operated there for the bulk of the evening.

    Her updated version of Randy Travis’ 1988 hit “I Told You So” was a prime example. The lyric is the pleading of a lover who has betrayed a partner’s trust and begs to be given another chance, knowing the answer may—and probably will—be no. Belting out the chorus in which the words convey the singer’s vulnerability, Underwood trampled the tenuous feelings at the song’s heart.

    Her firepower is better suited to her hits of vengeance and retribution such as “Before He Cheats,” “Cowboy Casanova” and the new album’s title track, although those too would only get stronger if she brought more shading and delicacy to relevant words and phrases to contrast with the raw emotion of the choruses.
    Pop music’s best singers understand that to everything—musically as well as temperamentally--there is a season, and thus know when to whisper and when to scream. The most invigorating musical conversations are those that rise and fall, ebb and flow in direct relation to the content of the dialogue. Underwood’s tacit message is that any idea worth sharing is more compelling the louder it is delivered.

    It’s hard to fault Underwood, however, as her audience cheered every supernaturally sustained note and glass-threatening vocal climax, offering positive reinforcement as if to an Olympic pole vaulter scaling ever higher altitudes.


    Review: Feeling blown away by Carrie Underwood at Staples Center - latimes.com


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    Carrie Guru pklongbeach's Avatar
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    WEll it certainly leaves no question about Carrie vocal ability.
    But, this is an issue that a vocalist like Carrie will always face when she is doing "huge" shows.
    So I take it with a grain of salt. And the writer was certainly not a hater.
    Even acknowleging that "big" is what the audience was calling for.
    You don't go to a Van Halen concert or a Megadeth concert and suggest they were singng "too big".
    And I personally do feel Carrie is caught in a "damned if you do and damned if you don't" situation.
    She has always heard "we want more "Entertainment" and "we want more subtlty.
    Not sure what you do except your best and hope people like it.
    I think that is what she does and I think people LOVE it.
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    Carrie Fans Legend teesharky's Avatar
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    Perfect Title to the review! Love it!

    Good review overall from LA Times - a very tough critic and especially tough on carrie over the years.
    There were afew nitpicky comments but nothing bad. Clearly he prefers soft subtle country music but he gave Carrie props anyway and didn't roast her.

    For the LA Times-- this is a good review imo.

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    He's obviously not familiar with her entire catalogue and doesn't realize that she chose NOT to include the softer songs for the sake of the "concert entertainment" factor for her fans.
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    Insane Carrie Fan liz278's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by opry051008 View Post
    He's obviously not familiar with her entire catalogue and doesn't realize that she chose NOT to include the softer songs for the sake of the "concert entertainment" factor for her fans.
    And he got the name of the song that she & Hunter sang wrong
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    Quote Originally Posted by liz278 View Post
    And he got the name of the song that she & Hunter sang wrong
    Yup, total fail on that one.

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    Insane Carrie Fan Gator's Avatar
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    Too busy trying to criticize her to even mention the encore. At least it's better than I expected.
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    Insane Carrie Fan gaycarebear's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by liz278 View Post
    And he got the name of the song that she & Hunter sang wrong
    And the name of the town she's from. SMH. Haha.

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    Obsessed Chart Watcher cary78663's Avatar
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    I thought the comment on ITYS was interesting as the reviewer was clearly comparing Carrie's version to Randy's version and the reviewer clearly prefers Randy's version. Yet Randy himself has said that Carrie's version is "better version than he could ever do".
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    Insane Carrie Fan Gator's Avatar
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    And then there's this: "...
    or the heart-rending way
    Tammy Wynette
    haltingly confesses “Sometimes it’s hard to be a woman” at the outset of “Stand By Your Man.”"

    I guess he's never heard Carrie sing SBYM...
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    Obsessed Carrie Fan PRGuy79's Avatar
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    I think criticism like this is something that all the vocalists with "big" voices face at the height of their careers - whatever the genre. The same comments were leveled at Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, etc. When you have that kind of incredible (and very rare) power, fans want to hear it whenever possible. As a result, some of the nitpicky critics start asking for more restraint.

    Maybe a more acoustic third single choice like DYTAM would make this critic happy?

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    Quote Originally Posted by cary78663 View Post
    I thought the comment on ITYS was interesting as the reviewer was clearly comparing Carrie's version to Randy's version and the reviewer clearly prefers Randy's version. Yet Randy himself has said that Carrie's version is "better version than he could ever do".
    True but I can see where he might be coming from because sometimes Carrie doesn't always sing ITYS with as much heart as she does other times. But I think that's true of all performers when they're doing 55 shows in 3 months.
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    In my opinion, this review is not bad considering the reviewer is not a country music fan. Remember, this is Los Angeles, country music is not really popular here. .
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    Quote Originally Posted by PRGuy79 View Post
    I think criticism like this is something that all the vocalists with "big" voices face at the height of their careers - whatever the genre. The same comments were leveled at Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, etc. When you have that kind of incredible (and very rare) power, fans want to hear it whenever possible. As a result, some of the nitpicky critics start asking for more restraint.

    Maybe a more acoustic third single choice like DYTAM would make this critic happy?
    I gonna guess no to that.
    Another reviewer with a bug up his butt who can't even be bothered to get the most rudimentary things right. And forgoes the encore.

    reviewer fail
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    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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    Carrie Fans Legend teesharky's Avatar
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    Cary have you noticed a trend among male critics re: ITYS? Lol They all prefer Randys version to Carries but I think that is just a personal stylistic preference thing. Carries version is stunning and won a Grammy so they can stuff it. Lol I think they just have a bias toward the original- which is understandable.
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    Insane Carrie Fan carebear4eva's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gator View Post
    And then there's this: "...
    or the heart-rending way
    Tammy Wynette
    haltingly confesses “Sometimes it’s hard to be a woman” at the outset of “Stand By Your Man.”"

    I guess he's never heard Carrie sing SBYM...
    Naw...Sorry, I'm aware I'm on CARRIE fans, but Tammy's voice reveals hidden pain beneath a put-up-with-it smile when she sings that line. Carrie sounds mildly bored.

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    Insane Carrie Fan gaycarebear's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carebear4eva View Post
    Naw...Sorry, I'm aware I'm on CARRIE fans, but Tammy's voice reveals hidden pain beneath a put-up-with-it smile when she sings that line. Carrie sounds mildly bored.
    BLASPHEMY!

    Are you sure you are a Carrie fan?!
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  • #18
    Carrie Fans Legend teesharky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maddkat View Post
    I gonna guess no to that.
    Another reviewer with a bug up his butt who can't even be bothered to get the most rudimentary things right. And forgoes the encore.

    reviewer fail

    This wasn't a bad review though. LA Times usually slams Carrie. Thank God it wasn't Chris Willman reviewing. Lol The only song off BA he liked was Forever Changed and carrie doesnt perform that song.

    This guy clearly enjoyed the show and gave a good review overall with a few nitpics that are just his stylistic preference.

    i had prepared myself for a Roast like Minnesota so I am happy with this one. Lol
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    Carrie Guru epicamends's Avatar
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    Hopefully lots of Grammy voters were at the show last night and saw how amazing Carrie is.
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  • #20
    Carrie Guru rainbow1's Avatar
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    It was a good review. Realistically, he was probably giving her some positive critique, and one that I have wondered about at times. Sometimes in these arena shows, you can't really FEEL some of Carrie's words or phrases. I'm not being negative here....I love her to death...and I would imagine that when you get out there on that stage, and look at that mass of people...you would naturally want to fill the house!!!


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