Whitney Houston better clear out more space on her mantle for some Grammys. If initial reviews are any indication, the pop diva is back on the path to Grammy gold.
Houston’s seventh studio album I Look to You, due Monday, is receiving high marks from critics including the Los Angeles Times, USA Today, and Chicago Sun-Times.
“The best giant ballad is the Warren-penned, David Foster-produced ‘I Didn’t Know My Own Strength,’ an exhibition of battle scars that’s richer for the weary, injury-protecting quality of Houston’s vocal,” wrote L.A. Times music critic Ann Powers. “If she does earn the Grammy she’s virtually been promised for a song from this set, it should be for this one.”
USA Today’s Steve Jones rated it 3.5 stars out of 4, saying, “It’s loaded with tunes that are perfect for recapturing the magic that once made her a transcendent star.”
The Chicago Sun-Times’ Jim DeRogatis offered more praise. “The sound throughout is clean, modern, unfettered, and consistently designed to keep the focus on Houston’s singing, whether it’s on the moderately bouncing club tracks or the requisite ballads.”
The August 31 cutoff for the 2010 Grammy Awards nominations prompted Clive Davis to release the album a day ahead of its original September 1 date. I Look to You will now be eligible for next year’s ceremony.
Davis hosted a series of high-profile listening events for the album in July, which drew the likes of Halle Berry, Stevie Wonder, and Alicia Keys. The first singles, “I Look to You” and “Million Dollar Bill,” have achieved most-added status at radio, while the album is already No. 2 in music on Amazon.com’s Bestsellers list.
Houston has won six Grammys over her illustrious career, her most recent one in 1999. It looks as though the decade-long dry spell is about to end.