Real Girl

Studio Album by released in 2007
Real Girl's tracklist:
Just a Little Bit
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Real Girl
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Song 4 Mutya (Out of Control) (feat. Groove Armada)
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Breakdown Motel
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Strung Out
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It's Not Easy
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Suffer for Love
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Not Your Baby
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Wonderful
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B-Boy Baby (feat. Amy Winehouse)
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This Is Not Real Love (feat. George Michael)
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Paperbag
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My Song
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Real Girl review

Mutya Buena tries her hand in other genres

Little are aware that former Sugababes member Mutya Buena's name is derived from the Tagalog word "muse" or "beautiful maiden", and probably that was it that inspired the singer to go in for music. After leaving girls band in December 2005, twenty-two year old Mutya has done her best to prove everyone and mostly herself that she can be an independent artist as well. She has recorded several songs with such performers as Tah Mac, MC Viper, Groove Armada and George Michael and joined the latter on his tour in Britain. All this served a springboard for the beginning of her solo career and this June Buena releases her debut album Real Girl. Speaking about Mutya Buena's style one of course cannot help comparing her with Sugababes, who mainly stick to electro and pop but the new record makes it quite clear that the singer has decided to try her hand in other genres, too. Real Girl finds Mutya Buena experiencing several moods from happiness to worry and even suffering and stylistically the albym varies from classic R&B to funk, soul and some elements of jazz.

A harmonious album Real Girl

Out of the album's thirteen tracks three are featured with guest performers, nevertheless it does not mean that any of them sings Mutya Buena out, for each of the compositions is by all means hers. The opening composition Just A Little Bit has a complicated melody and varies from a slight jazz to funk and the first single and title song Real Girl, sampling Lenny Kravitz's song It Ain't Over 'till It's Over, presents a brilliant R&B number. Electro pop composition Song 4 Mutya (Out Of Control) featuring Groove Armada can be also found on Groove Armada's album Soundboy Rock and is a charming danceable composition with infectious beat and a catchy tune. One of the most unexpected is song Strung Out for it is about the problems of heroin addiction and is one of emotionally hardest points on the album. Another suchlike composition telling of how hard life is – It's Not Easy – is devoted to Mutya's two year old daughter, and gloomy track Suffer For Love concludes the dark series. Ballad Wonderful reveals Buena's ability to be sweet and gentle, while B Boy Baby featuring who but Amy Winehouse is refined with a sax and iridescent musical background, finds the girls admiring a guy in a joking and daring way. It would have been unnatural if Mutya had not included the masterpiece performed with George Michael This Is Not (Real Love) which is sure to please the fans of the pop idol, and the final composition My Song filled with despair once again reminds us that Mutya is not always content with life. And yet with such changing attitude Real Girl is a very harmonious album proving that the singer's vocals can be conceived greatly when she is not a part of a band any more.

A sultry urban record

Although Mutya Buena has left Sugababes she has managed to preserve friendship with the band's members and they in their turn have treated her decision with respect. Some believe that one of the main reasons for her leaving was the fact that in just a month Mutya became a mother. Whether it is true or not, the singer was surely not going to stop at that point. The work on the debut record has taken quite some time, and resulted in a sultry urban collection of womanly deep-felt songs. Collaborations are definitely in the picture on Real Girl, and the choice of guest stars is really worth admiring. Yet it does not at all mean that these tracks are basically staked on. On each of these songs Mutya Buena undoubtedly solos, the only probable exception being This Is Not (Real Love), which presents a full-fledged duet of talents. This proves once again that the singer feels confident enough in her new role, and one can be sure that the confidence will only harden with the forthcoming works of hers. With the potential she has demonstrated on the debut album her performance is sure to evolve and the professional growth will please us all the time.