Some people will tell you that style is more important than substance. And while in some rare cases, very rare, they're right, when it comes right down to brass tacks, substance is still the key to a good record. Mr. (Kevin) Wright is ultimately concerned with being a fancy man (hence the title of his last album, *The Fancy Man*) and with styling himself a posh world of dewy cocktail parties and stardust masquerade balls filled with sophisticated movie star magic. Unfortunately, Mr. Wright's endless evening of enchantment is probably much more well-conceived in his own mind than on this record.
Like his label-mate, the incomparable Momus, Mr. Wright goes for a slightly cheesy lounge sound, trying to let the aching, but well-bred, sexuality of his voice take centre stage. Where Momus' dry wit and sassiness succeeds, Mr. Wright just comes off as largely annoying. His more up-beat tracks ("You're a Queen," "The Balloon Race," and the title track) are fun and well-balanced, but they are offset by the unbearably long, slow numbers that only make our friend look like a half-corked try-hard. You can almost see him dancing around in a top hat and cane, blowing pixie dust from his hand and winking at the moon. Dramatic and over-blown, *Star Time* is certainly a gutsy record, and Mr. Wright does have his schtick down pat, it's just too bad that he doesn't follow through and make the music more worthwhile.
Recommended Tracks: You're a Queen, The Balloon Race
By Elizabeth Chorney
Jul 23, 2001