Wilma’s Rating ****
Rachel Tuckers long awaited solo album comes only 8 months after the West End actress left the hit musical Wicked. Fans have been clambering around for scraps of this upcoming release and 12th August can’t come soon enough for a lot of people.
Starting with a beautiful version of Ed Sheerans ‘Small Bump’, this is the perfect way for Rachel to re-introduce herself to her fans after having had a baby at the start of this year.
Celine Dion’s ‘The Reason’ (which the album title comes from) can only be done justice by a few people in the world, one of which is Celine and it now appears Rachel Tucker can be added to that list as well with a rip-roaring version.
A broken down acoustic version of ‘I’ll Cover You’ from Rent the Musical features a cheeky line from ‘Seasons of Love’ and why not!
My favourite song on the album is a version of Paloma Faiths ‘Stone Cold Sober’ which has a Charlotte Church/Christina Aguilera sound to it and could have the biggest potential for a chart hit. The chorus has you dancing in your seat and is the one song I can’t stop listening to on ‘The Reason’.
Of course there are certain songs from certain shows that HAD to be on this album. One comes a little later on but up next is ‘No One But You’ from We Will Rock You (which Rachel played the role of Meat in 2008).
‘One Night Only’ from the musical Dreamgirls is another powerful, upbeat tempo number which leads straight into the haunting ‘My Immortal’ by Evanessence. Michael Jacksons ‘Gone Too Soon’ from his 1993 album Dangerous is another lovely track with the opening lines ‘like a comet’ which sound a lot another song Rachel used to sing in a different show!
Speaking of Wicked, of course the album can’t be over without the obligatory recording of ‘Defying Gravity’ that seems to have become the thing to do when you finish playing the role of Elphaba and this is not a let down! Rachel’s version is acoustic, yet powerful and has everything a Wicked fan could hope for in a recording of this song. The growling notes, the belting, everything that fans have grown to love Rachel Tucker for. I don’t believe anyone can listen to this version of the song and just say “wow”!
Having sold out an album preview show at the St James Studio last month, Rachel has announced another date in the larger main hall of the St James Thestre later this year. With tickets for that almost sold out I am sure it won’t be long before we see Rachel Tucker back on a stage as big as the Apollo Victoria (just this time without the green).