1. Bring It On 2. Prayer For The Dying 3. Dreaming In Metaphors 4. Don’t Cry 5. Fast Changes 6. Kiss From A Rose 7. People Asking Why 8. Newborn Friend 9. If I Could 10. I’m Alive 11. Bring It On (Reprise)
British native Sealhenry Samuel is a tall, strikingly handsome son of Nigerian/Brazilian lineage, with a richly evocative voice that at times suggests the milieu of great song stylists such as Marvin Gaye, Peter Gabriel and Milton Nascimento. SEAL is decidedly sexy yet never descends into the ooh-baby smarminess so prevalent on top of the R&B charts; it is boldly eclectic yet never loses its tight, poppy stylistic focus; and it exudes real spiritual warmth without becoming sappy or preachy. Together with producer Trevor Horn (Art Of Noise, Rod Stewart, Yes), Seal has created a spacious sonic canvas that is as big and exotic as the singer himself, a colourful mixture of moods with a classic touch. On "Prayer For The Dying", Seal celebrates the ongoing dance between the living and the dead from both points of view, seeing it all as part of the natural order of things--not strictly tragic. On "Dreaming In Metaphors" he enunciates another personal journey of faith, and wonders aloud why we "Try to hold onto something we couldn't understand". On "Fast Changes", he mixes and matches folk, jazz and Indian sensibilities in an acoustic guitar flavoured love song that recalls the Joni Mitchell of HEJIRA. Joni returns the favour by harmonising with Seal on the hymn-like changes of "If I Could", the langour of the arrangement standing in stark contrast to the pleas of lovers drifting apart. All in all, SEAL is a vibrant, original vision of pop that should propel Seal to international superstardom.