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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

HOWIE DOROUGH: "Live From Toronto" Album Review — 4.5 Out Of 5 Stars

Howie Dorough's power and presence come through loud and clear on his new seven-song live release, Live From Toronto, available March 13, 2012 (today) on iTunes.

His inimitable charisma and charm have anchored Backstreet Boys since their inception, and that energy courses through this stripped down EP. He takes tunes from his solo debut, Back to Me, and breaks them down to the bare essentials. With piano resounding, Howie sounds pristine and potent on the infectious and irresistible opener, "100". Even without the bombastic club-ready production, the single's swagger remains intact, and the singer's live delivery is instantly catchy.

On the other end of the spectrum, "Way to Your Heart" brings listeners directly into Howie's embrace. It's an intimate and vulnerable moment carried by Howie's honesty. At the same time, "Lie to Me" bears a cinematic prowess that'd be perfect for the turning point of any romantic comedy or drama. Then there's "Sleepingwalking", which starts with a mounting piano intro as his falsetto flutters over the keys flawlessly.

"Going Going Gone" rolls right into the gorgeous closer "How Did I Fall In Love". Live From Toronto stands emblematic of Howie's diversity and versatility. It's a unique, undeniable, and utterly delightful live record from one of pop's best voices.

You'll feel like you were there, and you'll want to go back again as soon as it finishes.