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Aside from a siren-propelled power ballad ''U Can't Ignore Me'' – a protest song from a gay American, displaying Creel's gay activist jones – the rest of Get Out is sweeter, and closer to what you'd expect from an eager-to-please Broadway belter. There is much theater know-how on display here, particularly the values of pacing and modulation, keys to drawing and especially keeping one's attention. But this is a pop album through and through, with tunes straddling the divides with folk and rock – from the Indigo Girls-esque tender rocker ''Sooner or Later'' to the karma-informed rock anthem ''Beautiful or Wrong.'' And instead of an ode to, say, Patti LuPone, for example, Creel offers thanks to ''Whitney Houston'' for helping him get through his childhood in ''Nowhereville, Ohio.'' It's a slightly too cute but thoroughly clever, giddy song written before the pop legend's death, but even more resonant because of it.
Anyway, forget what Simon (Cowell) says: Theater stars can do pop. And Creel is living proof.
Just as perfectly as it began, Get Out ends with the yearning ''Come Alive,'' in which Creel effectively calls on a crowd to rise to its feet.
He deserves a standing ovation.
Download These: ''Enough,'' ''Whitney Houston,'' ''Come Alive''