Following hit singles 'Rise' and 'Sunshine', Gabrielle treated us to a sweet soul-flavoured tune with 'When A Woman' in June 2000... It's seven years since Gabrielle first introduced us to her outstanding Motown-influenced sound when she went to the top of the charts with 'Dreams' in June '93.
"Sweet soul-flavoured tune" isn't far off the mark. It marks a bit of a change from the overt eagerness to please of the first five tracks, each of which was clearly built from the ground up to be a massive hit single: it's also a step away from the previous two Gabrielle singles, which both seemed like songs with an emotional burden to carry. Instead, 'When A Woman' has a breezy feel, as if she's letting her hair down a bit and just singing this one for fun. Whether that's true or not, there's something relaxed and warm-hearted about this song that it's hard not to fall for, even if the lyric never quite explains what her "masterplan" is supposed to be. It may not have been my view at the time, but as of 2012 I rate this as the best track on the album so far.
Also appearing on: Now 25, 26, 27, 33, 35 (with East 17), 36, 45, 46, 47, 49, 50, 58
Available on: In Love