Leona Lewis (Syco)
Leona Lewis hasn’t attempted to fix what wasn’t broken, at least in commercial terms.
Echo, the title either a neat in-joke or an unfortunate coincidence, echoes Lewis’ debut: broader and more expensive-sounding sure, but as slow-paced and short on memorable melodies.
Simon Cowell’s influence is predictably large.
Big ballads, such as My Hands and Broken, are anonymous; the few nods to R’n’B are pretty insipid.
The album’s main ITV prime-time moment comes with a kitsch version of Oasis’ Stop Crying Your Heart Out, which starts with barely audible synth washes, and ends four minutes later with a choir
and an orchestra.
The sole surprise comes courtesy of Outta My Head, an uptempo attempt at filling the long-since-emptied dance floor.
Lewis doesn’t sound entirely at home with the pulsing electro backdrop, but it’s better than sounding too comfortable, which is the main problem with the rest of this glossy but strangely lifeless record.