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Far from Heavenly

Destiny's Child, Aerosmith lead "Charlie's Angels" Soundtrack

It seems only natural that Destiny's Child has become the "voice" behind the new "Charlie's Angels" movie. Not unlike the television series in its later years, Destiny's Child has become a revolving door for beautiful women . . . and both the series and the group lost their respective Farrahs just as success was imminent.

Both are back, however, with all-new trios to wow the audiences. This time, of course, Destiny's Child is singing the praises of being an "Independent Woman" while Drew Barrymore, Cameron Diaz and Lucy Liu are (karate) kicking some butt on Charlie's behalf!

At a glance, the soundtrack appears strong. Where else will you find new cuts from Destiny's Child, Fatboy Slim and newcomer Caviar mixed with flashbacks by Heart ("Barracuda"), Spandau Ballet ("True"), and Marvin Gaye? Aerosmith even contributes "Angel's Eye," their rocking follow-up to their smash No. 1 single from the "Armageddon" soundtrack, "I Don't Wanna Miss a Thing." Add to that the addition of Sir Mix-A-Lot's "Baby Got Back" and you have a sure-fire winner. Right? Wrong.

Aside from Apollo Four Forty's headache-inspiring rework of the Angel's theme, found here as "Charlie's Angels 2000," most of the tracks would individually be crowd-pleasers. Of the 15-track set, nine are former chart-toppers. Mix into the previously mentioned group such stand-outs as Deee-Lite's "Groove Is In The Heart," Looking Glass' "Brandy (You're a Fine Girl)," Leo Sayer's "You Make Me Feel Like Dancin'" and The Vapoers' "Turning Japanese," and you have an enviable mix of hits from the past three decades. However, after a listen, it becomes evident why there hasn't been a compilation like this previously.

The transitions, due to the diverse musical styles, seem jerky, unnatural. Otherwise likable songs--such as Gaye's "Got to Give It Up (Part 1)"--do not mix well when followed by Fatboy Slim's "Ya Mama." This leaves the listener, this one at least, feeling annoyed. (In fact, "Ya Mama" is a far cry from merry-making "Praise You," which was ubiquitous at radio just last fall.)

When pairing the words "ubiquitous" and "radio," though, one can only be speaking of Destiny's Child. Currently the hottest property on radio, in any of its incarnation's, the group's sound has dominated the airwaves and spun off a string of sound-alike hits (see The Spice Girls' "Holler" and Mya's "Case of the Ex" as examples).

The group is in fine form with two new cuts here. "Independent Woman (Part 1)," with its sistahs-are-doin'-it-for-themselves lyrics, is blazing up the charts . . . and quickly saturating radio. Admit it. The song is "instantly likeable"

Aerosmith leads the way on the Charlie's Angels Movie Soundtrack

because it seems the listener has heard it before. And you have. The similarities to past tracks such as "Jumpin' Jumpin'" and "Say My Name," are undeniable--verging on recycled. Certainly it's satisfying--it IS "the sound" of the moment--but it's unique that as the group is ever-changing, the song stays the same.

"Dot," the second new track by the group, is also strong--if cookie-cutter. With sing along chorus and smooth harmonies, which have become the trademark of the trio (formerly quartet!), "Dot" is likely to find a warm reception particularly at urban radio.

"Charlie's Angels" could prove to be a must-see movie for fans of the TV series, if for no other reason than to point out ways the new Angels can't compare to the originals. The soundtrack, however, can be skipped.

Fans of Aerosmith can buy the single. There'll be no need to go that far for Destiny's Child fans. The group (and imitators) will be flooding airwaves long enough to tide over even the most devoted fans until the trio regroups with a full-length follow-up to the platinum-selling "The Writing Is On The Wall."

Click here to purchase this CD (or others) from Amazon.com

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