Tuan Ngoc – Thang Bay Chua Mua

Thang Bay Chua Mua is another savory album from the “Vietnamese Frank Sinatra” Tuan Ngoc. Of course, one of the advantages of owning his record label (Bich Thu Van) is the total control of the production. He crafts his album to live up to his selected audience’s expectations. Each song has been carefully chosen to suit his captivating performances. Along with Duy Cuong’s gorgeous musical arrangement, Tuan Ngoc and his special guests (Quynh Giao, Thai Hien, and Le Thu) sway the listeners into an intimate atmosphere.

Unlike popular albums, where they get stale after several run through, Thang Bay Chua Mua increases the aesthetic experience each time I listen to it, especially the remarkable “Goi Nguoi Em Gai” by Doan Chuan and Tu Linh where his vocals ride marvelously with the melody. His polished technique is most effective on the immaculately smooth “Hung Ho” and the sensual composition of Pham Duy’s “Mong Du.”

From the title track of Pham Anh Dung’s “Thang Bay Chua Mua” to Pham Duy’s “Ky Niem” to Dao Duy’s “Dieu Buon” to Hoang Trong Thuy’s “Nguoi Nhu Co Quen,” Tuan Ngoc never leaves his listeners in doubt with his exceptional executions whether from the way he holds a note or drops a word.

While Quynh Giao, Thai Hien, and Le Thu added some elegant voices to the work, their solo performances seem out of place. Their special appearances would leave a deeper impact if each did a duet with Tuan Ngoc.

Thang Bay Chua Mua is consistently good. It meets my expectation even though I do expect high quality works. A fan of Tuan Ngoc should not allow this album to slip by.

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