Jessie Galante - The Show Must Go On

Jessie Galante The Show Must Go On cover
Jessie Galante
The Show Must Go On
Tanzan Music
Jessie Galante is a rock singer that didn’t have much luck in the 80s, with both the bands she was in Actor and Fire (with some House Of Lords members no less) not amounting to more than an EP and a demo respectively and her becoming a local “heroine”.
After another musical foray in 2009 with “Spitfire” that must have not amounted to much, she returns with a new collection of songs some eight years later. It seems to have been recorded on the back burner with the aid of a lot of Mrs Galante’s late husband, a respected in not somewhat obscure producer by the name of Larry Swist (who did work with Lou Gramm, Spyro Gyra and Tina Turner at one time or other). There’s an arms long list of people who are semi famous for having worked with famous people, all of them quite proficient and all, but I doubt if it makes much sense to list em here.
Galante has a strong rock voice, a bit reminiscent of Anastasia Newkirk’s (better known as: Anastacia), but with a timbre that’s a bit more brittle, but not too annoying, just a little more hit or miss, on whether you ‘re gonna like her.
There’s definite quality in the material on the album, which is expertly performed and produced, but I am not entirely sure about cohesion, as the only thing that ties it together is the voice, because both players and even producers are not the same on all the tracks, much less musical styles…
“Diamond in the Sky” is a shouty rocker, with the vocals so upfront and the chorus so sassy that while it has a hook, it just sounds too pretentious, or even out of place and time... with the vocal style being late 80s, but the production attempting to be contemporary.
“Dreamer” is a semi-ballad that works a lot better, but is not 100% focused, with Galante putting a lot more effort than would be necessary and the vocals mixed quite back and harmonies coming across quite flat.
“Border Song” is much better on all accounts, as Galante goes even for a lower register, a bluesier delivery but the song is a bit too gospely for my tastes.
“Drown” has this contemporary sounding beat that made me think... hmm… but as soon as it kicks off for real it really works. Even Galante’s thin timbre is not annoying, but I have little doubt that some backing vocals other than her own would have thickened up the whole thing.
The first minute of “Mamma (I get a little crazy)” is reminiscent of a better Macy Gray – that’s not too difficult eh – and goes a bit Tina Turner thereafter, but not entirely in the way you’d expect…
“More Like Love Divine” has a very “vintage Whitesnake” swagger and is a duet with someone (possibly Enrico Scutti – Figure Of Six)… not bad as far a song goes, by while the male vocals are spot on, Galante’s are a little over the top – she can channel passion alright, but I ain’t 100% sure I like what I hear… as she pushes it a bit too much, in fact her better performances are when she doesn’t go for the top of her range.
“Mamma Said” – guess what, think of a slow and groovy number that sounds again a bit over the top due to Galante’s vocal acrobatics beginning to tire after a while…
Remains of the Day” is all things considered one of the most reserved things on the album and sounds much better for that, with Galante not going out of her comfort zone.
The cover of Queen’s “Show Must Go On”, that even lends the name to the collection of songs, is OKk, with JG constraining herself vocally to only what she has to do and while it’s well enough done, although the original is a soul stirring classic, this sounds like a decent play through and nothing more, lacking the depth of emotion despite solid performances.
“Beautiful Man” reminded me a lot of Australia’s own Cheetah and their semi-ballad rockers they’d do, as is feels quite alike. It’s actually the only song I truly enjoyed hands down.
Last on international versions of the album – because there’s even a Japanese one (!) is a cover of The Moody Blues’ “Nights in White Satin”, which fares so much better than “TSMGO” one, being much closer stylistically and overall better suited to Galante vocally.
A mishmash of mostly well-written and produced songs that rarely ever work mainly due to the over the top theatrics of a vocalist who feels compelled to belt out, even when she doesn’t have too and ends up quite the handful, marring her own record, ultimately. Not terrible, but very uneven.