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Seal|Seal IV (U.S. Version)

Seal IV (U.S. Version)

Seal

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Besides taking his usual multi-year hiatus before releasing Seal IV, the artist scrapped a whole album's worth of material, feeling he couldn't stand behind the strength of the songs (should this be Seal IV.I?). It's disappointing, then, that the songs on Seal IV lack any of the Grammy-grabbing flair of his earlier releases. What saves it is a conviction that is high enough to overcome, a voice that is more driven than usual, and some genuine moments of songwriting inspiration. "Let Me Roll" has a cool swagger and fun wordplay, and the yearning ballad "Loneliest Star" is only a few steps away from "Kiss from a Rose." Opener "Get It Together" offers an Up With People understanding of the state of the world with its "everyone is beautiful" sentimentality, but it's the funky backbeat and gritty vocals that make it more Al Green than Lee Greenwood. A re-recording of Seal's collaboration with Jakatta, "My Vision" is given new life through more restrained than usual production from Trevor Horn. The absence of Horn's usual bombast throughout the album allows Seal's voice (in every sense of the word) to be the focus. It's a good move, and if the totally solid Jakatta-sourced track is any indication, a break from Horn might be beneficial next time. Despite being heavy with unexceptional tunes, Seal IV has enough going for it to warrant the next four years of anticipation.
© David Jeffries /TiVo

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Seal IV (U.S. Version)

Seal

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1
Get It Together
00:03:58

Mark Batson, Keyboards, Writer, CoProducer - Trevor Horn, Producer - Gavyn Wright, Conductor - Pete Murray, Keyboards - Jamie Muhoberac, Keyboards - Gus Isidore, Guitar - SEAL, Lead Vocals, Writer, MainArtist, ExecutiveProducer - Steve Price, Vocal Recording Engineer, String Recording Engineer - Nick Ingman, String Arranger, Choir Arranger - Tim Cansfield, Guitar - Tessa Niles, Backing Vocals - Robert Orton, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Phil Tyreman, AssistantEngineer - Tim Weidner, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - CHRIS BRUCE, Additional Guitar, Bass Guitar - EARL HARVIN, Drums - Jill Sinclair, ExecutiveProducer - Tim Lambert, AdditionalEngineer, AssistantEngineer - Luis Jardim, Percussion

© 2003 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 2003 Warner Records Inc.

2
Love's Divine (Album Version)
00:04:35

Mark Batson, Composer, Bass Guitar, Piano, Writer, Drum Programmer - Trevor Horn, Producer - Gavyn Wright, Conductor - Ian Thomas, Drums - Pete Murray, Piano - Jamie Muhoberac, Keyboards - Gus Isidore, Guitar - SEAL, Keyboards, Lead Vocals, Writer, MainArtist, ExecutiveProducer - Steve Price, Vocal Recording Engineer, String Recording Engineer - Nick Ingman, String Arranger, Choir Arranger - Tim Cansfield, Guitar - Robert Orton, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Phil Tyreman, AssistantEngineer - Tim Weidner, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - CHRIS BRUCE, Additional Guitar - Jill Sinclair, ExecutiveProducer - Tim Lambert, AssistantEngineer - Luis Jardim, Percussion

© 2003 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 2003 Warner Records Inc.

3
Waiting for You
00:03:44

Mark Batson, Bass Guitar, Keyboards, Writer, Drum Programmer, CoProducer - Tim Pierce, Guitar - Trevor Horn, Producer - Gavyn Wright, Conductor - Jamie Muhoberac, Bass Guitar, Keyboards - Gus Isidore, Guitar - SEAL, Lead Vocals, Writer, MainArtist, ExecutiveProducer - Steve Price, String Recording Engineer - Steve Sidwell, String Arranger, Choir Arranger, Horns Arranger - Robert Orton, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Phil Tyreman, AssistantEngineer - Tim Weidner, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - CHRIS BRUCE, Additional Guitar - EARL HARVIN, Drums - Jill Sinclair, ExecutiveProducer - Tim Lambert, AdditionalEngineer, AssistantEngineer - Luis Jardim, Percussion

© 2003 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 2003 Warner Records Inc.

4
My Vision (Album Version)
00:04:48

Tim Pierce, Guitar - Trevor Horn, Producer, Additional Guitar, CoProducer - Jamie Muhoberac, Keyboards - SEAL, Bass Guitar, Lead Vocals, Writer, MainArtist, ExecutiveProducer - Dave Lee, Writer - Thomas Newman, Writer - Robert Orton, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Phil Tyreman, AssistantEngineer - Tim Weidner, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - CHRIS BRUCE, Additional Guitar - EARL HARVIN, Drums - Jill Sinclair, ExecutiveProducer - Tim Lambert, AdditionalEngineer, AssistantEngineer - Rick Salmon, Writer - Dan Vickers, AdditionalEngineer - Luis Jardim, Percussion

© 2003 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 2003 Warner Records Inc.

5
Don't Make Me Wait (Album Version)
00:04:31

Mark Batson, Writer - Trevor Horn, Producer, Additional Guitar, Bass Guitar - Ian Thomas, Drums - Pete Murray, Piano - Jamie Muhoberac, Keyboards - SEAL, Lead Vocals, Writer, MainArtist, ExecutiveProducer - Steve Price, Orchestral Recording Engineer - Nick Ingman, Orchestral Arranger - Tim Cansfield, Guitar - Gavin Wright, Conductor - Robert Orton, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Phil Tyreman, AssistantEngineer - Tim Weidner, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Jill Sinclair, ExecutiveProducer - Tim Lambert, AssistantEngineer - Luis Jardim, Percussion

© 2003 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 2003 Warner Records Inc.

6
Let Me Roll (Album Version)
00:03:51

Mark Batson, Bass Guitar, Organ, Writer, Drum Programmer, CoProducer - Trevor Horn, Producer, Additional Guitar, Bass Guitar, Keyboards - Charlie Russell, Drum Programmer - Jamie Muhoberac, Keyboards - SEAL, Keyboards, Lead Vocals, Writer, MainArtist, ExecutiveProducer - Steve Price, Vocal Recording Engineer, String Recording Engineer - Nick Ingman, String Arranger - Gavin Wright, Conductor - Robert Orton, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Phil Tyreman, AssistantEngineer - Tim Weidner, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - CHRIS BRUCE, Additional Guitar - EARL HARVIN, Drums - Jill Sinclair, ExecutiveProducer - Tim Lambert, AdditionalEngineer, AssistantEngineer - Luis Jardim, Percussion

© 2003 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 2003 Warner Records Inc.

7
Touch (Album Version)
00:05:20

Mark Batson, Bass Guitar, Keyboards, Writer, Drum Programmer, CoProducer - Trevor Horn, Producer - Gavyn Wright, Conductor - Jamie Muhoberac, Keyboards - Gus Isidore, Guitar - SEAL, Lead Vocals, Writer, MainArtist, ExecutiveProducer - Steve Price, String Recording Engineer - Nick Ingman, String Arranger - Robert Orton, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Phil Tyreman, AssistantEngineer - Tim Weidner, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - CHRIS BRUCE, Additional Guitar - EARL HARVIN, Drums - Jill Sinclair, ExecutiveProducer - Tim Lambert, AssistantEngineer - Luis Jardim, Percussion

© 2003 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 2003 Warner Records Inc.

8
Where There's Gold (Album Version)
00:05:12

Mark Batson, Bass Guitar, Keyboards, Writer, CoProducer - Trevor Horn, Producer - Gavyn Wright, Conductor - Jamie Muhoberac, Keyboards - SEAL, Lead Vocals, Writer, MainArtist, ExecutiveProducer - Steve Price, String Recording Engineer - Steve Sidwell, String Arranger - Robert Orton, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Phil Tyreman, AssistantEngineer - Tim Weidner, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - CHRIS BRUCE, Additional Guitar - EARL HARVIN, Drums - Jill Sinclair, ExecutiveProducer - Tim Lambert, AssistantEngineer - Luis Jardim, Percussion

© 2003 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 2003 Warner Records Inc.

9
Loneliest Star (Album Version)
00:04:04

Mark Batson, Bass Guitar - Trevor Horn, Producer - Gavyn Wright, Conductor - Jamie Muhoberac, Keyboards, Piano - SEAL, Additional Guitar, Bass Guitar, Lead Vocals, Writer, MainArtist, ExecutiveProducer - Steve Price, String Recording Engineer - Nick Ingman, String Arranger - Robert Orton, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Phil Tyreman, AssistantEngineer - Tim Weidner, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - EARL HARVIN, Drums - Jill Sinclair, ExecutiveProducer - Tim Lambert, AssistantEngineer

© 2003 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 2003 Warner Records Inc.

10
Heavenly... (Good Feeling Album Version)
00:05:02

Trevor Horn, Producer - Alan Griffiths, Guitar, Writer, Drum Programmer - Gavyn Wright, Conductor - Jamie Muhoberac, Bass Guitar, Keyboards, Piano - Gus Isidore, Guitar - SEAL, Bass Guitar, Lead Vocals, Writer, MainArtist, ExecutiveProducer - Steve Price, String Recording Engineer - Nick Ingman, String Arranger - Robert Orton, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Phil Tyreman, AssistantEngineer - Tim Weidner, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - CHRIS BRUCE, Additional Guitar - EARL HARVIN, Drums - Jill Sinclair, ExecutiveProducer - Tim Lambert, AdditionalEngineer, AssistantEngineer - Luis Jardim, Percussion

© 2003 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 2003 Warner Records Inc.

11
Tinsel Town (Album Version)
00:05:51

Trevor Horn, Producer - Steve McDonald, Guitar - Jamie Muhoberac, Keyboards - SEAL, Additional Guitar, Bass Guitar, Keyboards, Lead Vocals, Writer, MainArtist, ExecutiveProducer - Steve Price, String Recording Engineer - Nick Ingman, String Arranger - Gavin Wright, Conductor - Robert Orton, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Phil Tyreman, AssistantEngineer - Tim Weidner, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Jill Sinclair, ExecutiveProducer - Tim Lambert, AssistantEngineer - Carlos Rios, Keyboards - Luis Jardim, Percussion - Heitor Pereira, Guitar

© 2003 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 2003 Warner Records Inc.

12
Get It Together (Reprise Album Version)
00:01:05

Mark Batson, Keyboards, Writer, CoProducer - Trevor Horn, Producer - Gavyn Wright, Conductor - Pete Murray, Keyboards - Jamie Muhoberac, Keyboards - Gus Isidore, Guitar - SEAL, Lead Vocals, Writer, MainArtist, ExecutiveProducer - Steve Price, Vocal Recording Engineer, String Recording Engineer - Nick Ingman, String Arranger, Choir Arranger - Tim Cansfield, Guitar - Tessa Niles, Backing Vocals - Robert Orton, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - Phil Tyreman, AssistantEngineer - Tim Weidner, Audio Recording Engineer, MixingEngineer - CHRIS BRUCE, Additional Guitar, Bass Guitar - EARL HARVIN, Drums - Jill Sinclair, ExecutiveProducer - Tim Lambert, AdditionalEngineer, AssistantEngineer - Luis Jardim, Percussion

© 2003 Warner Records Inc. ℗ 2003 Warner Records Inc.

Album Description

Besides taking his usual multi-year hiatus before releasing Seal IV, the artist scrapped a whole album's worth of material, feeling he couldn't stand behind the strength of the songs (should this be Seal IV.I?). It's disappointing, then, that the songs on Seal IV lack any of the Grammy-grabbing flair of his earlier releases. What saves it is a conviction that is high enough to overcome, a voice that is more driven than usual, and some genuine moments of songwriting inspiration. "Let Me Roll" has a cool swagger and fun wordplay, and the yearning ballad "Loneliest Star" is only a few steps away from "Kiss from a Rose." Opener "Get It Together" offers an Up With People understanding of the state of the world with its "everyone is beautiful" sentimentality, but it's the funky backbeat and gritty vocals that make it more Al Green than Lee Greenwood. A re-recording of Seal's collaboration with Jakatta, "My Vision" is given new life through more restrained than usual production from Trevor Horn. The absence of Horn's usual bombast throughout the album allows Seal's voice (in every sense of the word) to be the focus. It's a good move, and if the totally solid Jakatta-sourced track is any indication, a break from Horn might be beneficial next time. Despite being heavy with unexceptional tunes, Seal IV has enough going for it to warrant the next four years of anticipation.
© David Jeffries /TiVo

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