Shania Twain’s place in music history remains unsurpassed. Long before Taylor Swift, Twain co-wrote numerous hit singles that helped her cross into pop superstardom. Her 1997 album Come On Over continues to be the highest-selling country music album and the highest-selling studio album by a female, EVER.
The release of Still the One: Live from Vegas comes as Twain announces her first US/Canadian tour in more than a decade.
It captures Twain’s successful 2-year residency Las Vegas’ The Colosseum at Caesars Palace. The fact that these shows happened at all is a miracle, after a public divorce from husband, collaborator and legendary producer Mutt Lange and almost losing her voice amidst the stress and turmoil.
I’m Gonna Getcha Good! marks a rousing concert opener, displaying Twain’s understandably recovering but competent vocals. The fact that this is Twain’s newest hit off her most recent studio album to date (2002’s Up!) is poignant, but this performance certainly marks a triumphant return for the Canadian. It also sets the mood for the rest of the collection, which covers Twain’s catchy country-pop songs designed to get crowds on their feet (albeit with ex-husband Lange’s distinctive synthesized backing vocals all over).
Of course, Twain’s two mega-blockbuster albums The Woman in Me and Come on Over feature heavily on this live compilation. You Win My Love truly makes motors run with its entertaining performance complete with swagger. The electrifying fiddles and cooking band performance on Don’t Be Stupid (You Know I Love You) certainly make up for the awfully dated late-1990s dance mix.
Even ‘deeper’ cuts like I Ain’t No Quitter, No One Needs To Know, Honey, I’m Home and Whose Bed Have Your Boots Been Under? are still enjoyable, providing a fun country barn dance soundtrack in the auditorium.
However, the strength of Twain’s extensive catalogue becomes staggering when the setlist runs through her greatest hits, all of which are iconic, irresistible singalongs.
A no-nonsense performance of That Don’t Impress Me Much leaps right out of the speakers as Twain hits every note, having just the right balance between the country music original and the famous dance-flavoured radio mix.
(If You’re Not In It For Love) I’m Outta Here shows that Twain doesn’t need visuals or props for this song to sizzle. It is still entertaining on audio form, showcasing the momentous choruses (with THOSE drum hits) and Twain’s interaction with the crowd. The title track to Come On Over is transformed to an enjoyable folksy, laidback acoustic mid-tempo.
You’re Still The One remains lovely and swoon-worthy, though it does reveal that Twain’s voice has a lost a bit of dexterity and subtlety compared to the original. From This Moment On ends the main set majestically, though it’s no surprise that the outrageous, ballsy Man! I Feel Like A Woman! tears the house down to close the concert on an emphatically jubilant note.
Shania Twain has paved the way for female country artists to achieve success in the pop world. This live album is evidence that she hasn’t lost the ability to entertain and that her song catalogue will stand the test of time.