British soul singer Ruby Turner's 1986 debut album, Women Hold Up Half the Sky, was a modest hit in the U.K., spawning a couple Top 30 singles ("If You're Ready [Come Go with Me]" and "I'd Rather Go Blind"), as well as a couple that barely charted ("I'm in Love" and "Bye Baby"). It's average mid-'80s mainstream R&B in its vocals, material, and production, though Turner might have a bit more of a gospel feel than the typical middle-of-the-road soul singer of the era. There's not much of an edge to the record, and "Only Women Bleed" is hardly the most satisfying soulful choice of a 1970s pop hit to cover, though she digs into earthier classics with "I'd Rather Go Blind" and "A Woman Left Lonely." The 2010 CD reissue on Cherry Pop adds five bonus tracks, including an extended version of one cut from the album ("If You're Ready [Come Go with Me]") and an alternate version of another song from the original album ("In My Life [It's Better To Be in Love]"). ~ Richie Unterberger
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