Tony Bennett’s new album, Love is Here to Say, recorded with Diana Krakl, just doesn’t have it. It’s not terrible, of course (it’s Tony Bennett, after all), it just… doesn’t have it.
I’ve said previously that Tony Bennett doesn’t need duet partners. He doesn’t. The album would be better without Diana, but still wouldn’t be up to a typical Tony Bennett effort the past few years. The Silver Lining, for example, recorded in 2015, is stellar. That record, as with this new one, was recorded with the Bill Charlap Trio. Those guys are the second, third, and fourth best artists on the album. Diana is number five. Can’t have your second-most-featured person be the worst guy (lady) in the band. It’s a shame because Diana Krall has put out so much great music over the years. This one, though, is just flat. She’s not a big name anymore, not really bringing sales the way a Lady Gaga would do (another of Tony’s recent duet partners). When Diana was “new” she was hot. Literally. A young, good-looking lady who could sing and play standards? That was something. Now? Not so much.
There are a few moments on the disc, of course. I gave “Fascinating Rhythm” more than one listen. I think the whole idea, though, works better as a one-off novelty act. Seeing those two (those five, really) “fake it” live would be great. If you’ve got months of studio time, though… it’s got to be better.
Luckily for us, Tony’s only 92. He’ll have another record out soon.