JazzTimes - p.64
"[A]n album of deceptive simplicity that is the quintessence of quiet elegance, exquisite taste and impeccable musical instincts."
Billboard (p.36) - "[T]here's no doubting whose show this is -- only Streisand could turn 'Here's to Life' into such a soft-focus weeper."
Record Collector (magazine) - p.1083 stars out of 5
-- "LOVE IS THE ANSWER finds Streisand returning to what she does best, breathing new life into the American Songbook... '
Personnel: Anthony Wilson (guitar); Jeff Hamilton (drums).
Audio Mixer: Al Schmitt.
Liner Note Authors: Diana Krall; Jay Landers ; Barbra Streisand.
Photographers: Mary Maurer; John Clayton; Barbra Streisand.
Arranger: Johnny Mandel.
Even before their first session together, Barbra Streisand and collaborator Diana Krall designed LOVE IS THE ANSWER as a deeply emotional record: "each song an exploration concerning matters of the heart." And with the arrangements of maestro Johnny Mandel simply drawing occasional shading around Streisand's expressive voice--often leaving that voice as the only instrument--the album goes well beyond the usual saloon-song tropes to become a heart-wrenching experience on virtually every track. Additionally, although much was made of the two divas' collaboration, Krall's piano stays in the background, and Streisand's is the only voice heard here. Nearly every song is a classic of tender balladry, despite the fact that none had been put on album by Streisand before during her long career. Those facts alone should leave Streisand fans in ecstasy, as practically nothing stands in the way as she sings some of the best songs of the last century, aching and sincere with every melancholy or lovelorn ballad, tenderly strident with every (ultimately) uplifting anthem. "Spring Can Really Hang You Up the Most" opens up like a flower akin to some of her best performances, and the same goes for "Make Someone Happy," composed by the classic team of Jule Styne, Betty Comden, and Adolph Green (Styne composed the music for Streisand's FUNNY GIRL). Elsewhere, more classics of the American songbook--"Here's That Rainy Day," "Where Do You Start?," "In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning," "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes," "Gentle Rain"--prove themselves susceptible to the Barbra Streisand treatment. The overall effect is that this is one of the Streisand albums most appealing to her fans and, more importantly, potential fans -- which should include anyone who appreciates a singer singing like she's lived every line of her songs.