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Me And Armini - Emiliana Torrini

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2 Reviews

Genre: Rock - Pop Rock / Artist: Emiliana Torrini / Audio CD released 2008-09-08 at Rough Trade

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    2 Reviews
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      04.08.2009 14:39
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      Iceland has talent

      Working my way through the latest album by Glastonbury acts this year, I've been pretty disappointed but this one took me by surprise, I expected nothing of it but seem to have found a gem that I wasn't aware of.

      My favourite track comes omplete with Pigeon Street sound effects, the slightly dub influenced jazzy title track Me & Armini seems to lyrically grab you by the throat in a way that "Don't Speak" by No Doubt did.

      The vocalist's suave Icelandic voice sounds a cross between Bjork and more contemporary artists like Amy Winehouse, the result is probably better than both.

      A lot of the songs are slow and I have a tendency to criticise albums without a bit of umph to them, this album seems to make up with it though with some very pleasant guitar playing with unexpected chord changes that make it stand out and accompany Torrini's very melodic voice throughout.
      I'd never heard of this jazzy Italian-Icelander before and have to say I'm pretty fed up of rooting around female amateur acts that send you to sleep but get great reviews and somehow seem to be drawing fans, that's not the case with Emiliana Torrini, she seems to be the real thing. Finally, a good female act to come out in recent years (not so recent though, this is her 5th release) - if you enjoyed early work by Cerys Mathews, No Doubt, Bjork - there's a good chance you'll like this.



      1 Fireheads
      2 Me And Armini
      3 Birds
      4 Heard It All Before
      5 Ha Ha
      6 Big Jumps
      7 Jungle Drum
      8 Hold Heart
      9 Gun
      10 Beggar's Prayer
      11 Dead Duck
      12 Bleeder

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        06.03.2009 14:14
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        Third album from quirky Icelandic songstress

        Emiliana Torrini is one of those artists who are seemingly incapable of finding a genre they like and sticking with it, instead flitting between styles, picking up an influence here, a reference there. Her two internationally released albums have each shown a very different style - the first, Love in the Time of Science, fitting comfortably in the trip-hop/ pop genre, while the second, Fisherman's Woman, saw her pair up with instrumentalist and producer Dan Carey and head down a more melancholic folk road. Her latest release, Me and Armini, sees her combine a whole host of influences to meld them together into a pop album that should appeal to almost anyone.

        The title track, "Me and Armini", is one of the album's highlights - a catchy, summery, laid back pop track with a hint of reggae about it. When I first read that Me and Armini used reggae / ska influences my first thought was that she'd gone all Lily Allen on us! But the result is great - Emiliana's vocals providing the sweet charm in bucketfuls that Lily Allen so desperately lacks. "Heard it all before" is the standout track for me, again with a slight ska influence and hand clapping beats which constantly drive forward towards a wonderfully catchy chorus.

        Although this album plays around a lot with various influences, there are still the familiar melancholy folk sounds of Fisherman's woman with beautifully crafted tracks like "Ha, ha" which uses the sparse backing of the acoustic guitar and a slight hint of laid back, dreamy jazz. There is always a slight darkness to Emiliana Torrini's music when you look beneath the sweet and innocent surface. Many of the tracks here have a hint of cynicism, and the menacing lyrics of "Gun" and the stalker hints of "Me and Armini" give an interesting little dark twist to the sweet innocence of the vocals. The accompaniment is often sparse, putting the focus on the vocals, and then it will take a surprising but beautiful twist that seems to pull the metaphorical rug from beneath your feet and bring a smile to your face.

        But it's the poppy, happy, joy fuelled tracks that really capture the feel of this album, from the manic childlike vibe of "Jungle Drum" to "Big Jumps" with its doo-woppy chorus. You can't escape the feel that this is an album coming from a very loved-up place and it has a wonderful sunny summery feel - far less introspective than her previous two albums and doubly as fun and optimistic.

        Emiliana's vocals are as always superb, combining a slightly breathy innocent charm with a quirkiness that makes her sound unique. Her Icelandic accent and vocal and lyrical quirkiness has lead to inevitable comparisons with Bjork and this is probably a fair one as they are similar vocally - Torrini being almost Bjork's younger, much sweeter little sister.

        This is a wonderful album - very different in feel to the melancholy darkness of her previous two albums, but the perfect antidote to the cold winter weather! If you like artists such as Regina Spektor, Bjork, Feist, or female singer songwriters in general, then this is well worth a listen.

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      • Product Details

        Disc #1 Tracklisting
        1 Fireheads
        2 Me And Armini
        3 Birds
        4 Heard It All Before
        5 Ha Ha
        6 Big Jumps
        7 Jungle Drum
        8 Hold Heart
        9 Gun
        10 Beggar's Prayer
        11 Dead Duck
        12 Bleede