Ronan Keating is one of the biggest names in the Irish music scene. His 2020 album is simply called Twenty Twenty. It contains some already published songs in new versions and numerous collaborations with other artist. The album was released on 24th July. Here are my thoughts.
Ronan Keating – About The Artist
Ronan Patrick John Keating was born on 3rd March 1977 in Dublin. His first steps were of course as part of the Irish boy band Boyzone, which released seven albums. Thus, he already had a very successful start with his 2000 debut album Ronan, which was Top 10 almost in all major European markets. His 2002 Destination had similar success. Thereafter, it was a bit of an up and down. The next two albums had significantly lower chart positions, while the 2009 Songs for my Mother topped multiple markets (it was also Keating’s first #1 album in his home country. His most successful singles are likely his debut When You Say Nothing at All (1999), Life Is a Rollercoaster (2000) and If Tomorrow Never Comes (2002). Twenty Twenty is his eleventh album.
Ronan Keating – Twenty Twenty – Track By Track
Ronan Keatings album consists of 13 tracks and lasts 47 minutes.
1. Forever Ain’t Enough
Tonight, holdin’ you close under moonlight Don’t want this moment to pass by There’s nothing that I wouldn’t do One life ain’t long enough here by your side I see a future in your eyes The second I saw it I knew Forever ain’t enough with you
There is a strong touch of country music in this one, so the song just makes me smile. Nice start of the album, already gives your that Keating-music-for-the-heart feeling.
2. Little Thing Called Love
I wouldn’t really call Little Thing Called Love a blast or a must-listen – but it gives nostalgic feelings to me. It feels a bit to a trip back to the musical roots of Ronan Keating. And that’s why I have to like it somehow.
3. One Of A Kind (feat. Emeli Sande)
We stay and the soft and plushy clouds of love and come to the first duet on the album. This collaboration with Emeli Sande, who gives a lovely voice (sounds a bit like Mariah Carey to me…) to this song. Cool!
4. Only Lovers
Only Lovers is a very pop track. On the other, there are still that pinky plushy clouds in the song, it just needs to have soft background vocals. Otherwise, it is not a Keating.
5. Forever And Ever, Amen (feat. Shania Twain)
Ronan Keating has its roots in country music – and these cover of the Randy Travis classic is just lovely. It is already great when Keating sings the first verse solo, but it gets even better when he is joined by Shania Twain. I am smiling brightly 🙂
6. Love Will Remain (feat. Clare Bowen)
We stay in the world of country music. Love Will Remain is a pop track and even feels like dancing – but the Nashville TV series very own Clare Bowen gives the Nashville touch on this song. Good to feel like moving to rhythm now.
7. The One (feat. Nina Nesbitt)
When you’re lonely life’s movin’ slow And the road you take has nowhere to go I’ll be the one, be the one
Acoustic guitar and two voices – there is a lot of stuff which really touches me when I listen to Twenty Twenty. This track is a beauty.
8. The Big Goodbye (feat. Robbie Williams)
When you read Robbie in the lineup, you feel it just needs to be a big one. And it is even The Big Goodbye in there. But I have to admit that I have bigger feelings in other tracks. One factor is that the way the song is produced, it does not feel like a duet too much, the voices are just too similar.
9. Lovin’ Each Day (2020)
We are entering a section of four songs you have heard already. Lovin’ Each Day in its 2020 remake does the first step. I feel it’s actually not that bad. It is a bit more electric, more rhythmic than the original. On the other hand, this add-on kills a bit the strong presence of Keating’s vocals compared to the original. Towards the end, this new version feels quicker – I like that.
10. When You Say Nothing At All (2020) (feat. Alison Krauss)
The original is such a beauty – so I had a strong guess that this song will have a tough time with me. But… I have to say, I actually really like it. One reason: it is extremely close to the original – just the voice by bluegrass legend Alison Krauss adds some chords – and that’s really nice. You made it, Mr Keating… I like it 🙂
11. Life Is A Rollercoaster (2020)
These remake tracks always have a tough time. There is a song which has been big in the past – and the bigger it was, the more alien a new song version sounds. This is exactly what happens to me to the 2020 version of Life Is A Rollercoaster. I just don’t need that version. The original is way better. At least it feels like that to me.
12. One Of A Kind (Orchestral) (feat. Emeli Sande)
After these critical point, the album starts towards the great finale. The collaboration with Emeli Sande in the second version – I feel this is the better.
13. Something Wonderful
Don’t want this story to end, we’re only at the start I can see where this is goin’ Through I’m islands apart from where you are I can feel my spirit driftin’, it gets lost along the way Graced by your existence Now I just wanna stay with you, right here where I belong
We can make something wonderful This could be something beautiful Why would you wanna give up When we can make something wonderful?
Aaaaaah… After the ballad before, this is the lovely finish of Twenty Twenty. It warms your heart. Fantastic song!
Ronan Keating – Twenty Twenty – Spotify
Here is the Spoitfy link to Twenty Twenty:
Ronan Keating – Twenty Twenty – My View
Welcome to Keating-land! Ronan is just doing songs his way. No matter if they are new, cover versions or remakes. I just enjoy to listen to him. There are small weaknesses here and there (the duet with Robbie Williams feels disappointing to me, for example) – but overall, I like this 47 minute trip into the world of romance, warmth in your heart, gentle voices. It is plushy, but not too soapy to me. Thumbs up – I feel we are in the Top Picks! rankings here.