Marx Hurt by His New 'Enemy'

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), August 10, 2004 | Go to article overview

Marx Hurt by His New 'Enemy'


Byline: Scott Galupo, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Richard Marx

My Own Best Enemy#

Manhattan Records

Elvis Costello called his foray into country music "Almost Blue." Richard Marx should have titled his new album - his first under a major-label umbrella in seven years - "Almost Country."

With guys like Keith Urban on it (the Australian import plays guitar and sings on the lead single "When You're Gone"), "My Own Best Enemy" has the fundamentals of contemporary McCountry: the dishwatery lyrics, the near-ballad tempos, the glistening production values, the lavish vocal drama.

What it doesn't have, and hence the "Almost," are the trappings of McCountry: the fiddles, the pedal-steel guitars, the chicken-pickin' Telecasters.

Make no mistake, though: Mr. Marx could donate nearly all the songs here - take "Ready to Fly," with its avian metaphors, or "Love Goes On," with its inspirational blandness - to the likes of Shania Twain and Faith Hill.

And don't think they won't ask.

Since his own hits ("Don't Mean Nothing," "Satisfied") dried up in the early '90s, Mr. Marx has made a steady living writing and producing songs for artists such as Luther Vandross (their collaboration "Dance With my Father" earned Mr. Marx a song-of-the-year Grammy), Josh Groban, SheDaisy, Vince Gill and 'N Sync. …

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