Amy Winehouse’s ‘Lioness: Hidden Treasures’: Review Revue

Robbie Daw | December 6, 2011 12:51 pm

As the year winds down, there’s one solid, bitter fact about Amy Winehouse we all know to be true: she’s gone. And, as evidenced by the posthumous collection Lioness: Hidden Treasures, which was released today, the soulful UK singer sadly didn’t leave much original material behind following her death in July from “misadventure” (read: alcohol poisoning). We’ve rounded up some of the critics’ opinions on the album. Head below to see what the Internet at large had to say about Amy’s musical leftovers. :: If anything, the Los Angeles Times finds redemption for the pop-soul singer within the collection: “The 12-song compilation is slight on new insights — it’s hard to tell what an umpteenth version of ‘Girl From Ipanema’ adds to her legacy. But as vault-emptying collections go, Lioness helps rebut the tabloid qualities of her life and death, and return some of the focus back to what won her such allegiance — her voice.”

:: The Washington Post feels there’s too little to be had: “Lioness doesn’t have the craven feel of similar vault-scraping efforts from Jeff Buckley or Tupac; it just feels sad. Not because it speaks to Winehouse’s lost promise, but because there’s little in these often wan tracks that recalls the fiery, top-of-her-game Winehouse at all.”

:: The Atlantic pinpoints the album’s weakness to one song: “Plenty of people have accused Winehouse’s family of spoiling the singer’s memory by releasing songs she herself didn’t see fit to release, but the only serious misstep on the producers’ part is ‘Like Smoke,’ a half-written Winehouse song that’s frustratingly swollen with potential… Otherwise, though, even the rougher vocal performances are worth hearing a time or two.”

:: Meanwhile, the Dallas Morning News focuses on the LP’s main highlight: “All of them are compelling, but I’ll make special mention of ‘Between the Cheats,’ an original she taped in 2008 that merges ’60s girl-group splendor with contemporary beats.”

:: CNN notes the following: “…it’s bittersweet that this not-totally-essential set of covers and rarities refuses to let her leave us for good. True, as posthumous albums go, it’s leagues beyond hastily assembled fare like Michael Jackson’s Immortal.”

:: Reuters (via The Wrap) is less than impressed: “If you were praying Amy Winehouse at least left behind a lot of great unreleased material when she left us last August, prepare to have your hopes dashed… As it turns out, Winehouse’s vault couldn’t be much emptier if Geraldo Rivera were shining a flashlight into it on live television.”

:: As the Guardian points out, “Producer Salaam Remi has stated that Winehouse’s putative third album had been written, but – two exceptions aside – not yet recorded. So Lioness is more concerned with a redacted skim through the past than any future that might have been.”

:: The New York Times sums it up with this: “Lioness ekes out all it can from the archives… Had she survived, Winehouse might have had new insights into private turmoil, and a voice with eloquent scars. Lioness is just the scraps of what might have been.”

Enough of the critics — what do you think about Amy’s collection of unreleased tracks? Let us know below, or by hitting us up on Facebook and Twitter!