wears the trousers magazine


wears the trousers albums of the decade #75-51

part one part threepart four

Here’s the second part of our albums of the decade countdown, running from #75–51.

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75

Róisín Murphy
Overpowered

[EMI, 2007]

Of all the critical droolfests that failed to ignite on the commercial front this decade, Róisín Murphy’s second solo album is among the most inexplicable damp squibs. The ex-Moloko frontwoman may have shed the avant-garde experimentalism of her solo debut Ruby Blue in favour of full-on disco diva mode, set against a backdrop of thumping, shimmering state-of-the-art production, but it seems the world wasn’t ready to accept even Murphy’s toned down personality quirks. That’s a real shame for although Overpowered is not without its flaws, there is a sense of playful grandeur here that can easily toe the line with Goldfrapp at their most teasing.

Chris Catchpole

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emilíana torrini: live at royal festival hall 13/09/09
September 20, 2009, 4:45 pm
Filed under: live, review | Tags: , , ,

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Emilíana Torrini
Royal Festival Hall, London ••••½
September 13, 2009

“This is a gig that has been making me shit my pants these last few months,” chirps Emilíana during one of her many adorable rambles between songs as her band of dapper musicians retune. She might not have been joking either. For an artist whose last gigs in London were at ULU (800 capacity) and the Union Chapel (500 capacity), the near 3000-seater Royal Festival Hall is a dramatic upscale. Despite it being one of the Italo–Icelandic folk-pop singer’s most important, and no doubt intimidating, gigs of her career to date, she really needn’t have worried. While there were still a fair few empty seats, the audience were incredibly receptive and well behaved.

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emilíana torrini to release new EP
August 19, 2009, 1:11 pm
Filed under: news, trouser press, where's the gigs | Tags: , , ,

wie_emilianatorriniRemixes and live tracks abound

Already out in the US but not due here until September 14th, Emilíana Torrini’s new Me & Armini EP sees the reggae-flavoured title track from the Italo–Icelander’s 2008 studio album get a pair of makeovers from studio whizzes Simone Lombardi and Dan Carey. A quick listen to the 30-second previews on Amazon.com suggests that Lombardi’s version is simply a souped-up take on the album version with heavier bass and some subtle electronica added, while Carey (who originally produced the track in the first place) has given the song a retro disco sheen that sounds fantastic. As a wise man once said, two tracks do not an EP make, even for a digital release, so Emilíana has generously given us a couple of recordings from a recent visit to the KCRW studios in California, and her hushed performances of album tracks ‘Ha Ha’ and ‘Beggar’s Prayer’ bring things to a soothing close.

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UPDATED: inside issue seven!

issue7

Issue seven available NOW

We know you were all hoping for an exclusive interview with the illustrious Susan Boyle. Sorry to disappoint. Instead we chat with the following:

Ane Brun • Marissa Nadler • Emilíana Torrini • Amanda Palmer • Camera Obscura • Tara Jane O’Neil • Alessi’s Ark • Soap&Skin • First Aid Kit • Leila Arab • Kría Brekkan • Tift Merritt • Carina Round • Karima Francis • Ana Silvera • plus reviews of the new albums from Tori Amos, Peaches, St Vincent and more.

Free promotional copies are limited to 3000 – get yours now and pay only postage and packing. Details below.

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free music sunday: lay low
March 15, 2009, 8:12 pm
Filed under: free music friday, mp3, review, video | Tags: , , , ,

fmf_laylowLay Low
‘Last Time Around’

Friday came and went without any free downloads and the world didn’t end. This is good. We hope you’re all okay. Sorry for the lack of goodies but we got last-minute tickets to see Emilíana Torrini at London’s ULU in the evening and time ran out. We’ll make it up to you this week with a bumper Free Music Friday, but let this gorgeous little song from Lay Low – Emilíana’s support act on her current tour – tide you over. Lay Low is the alter ego of Icelandic singer-songwriter Lovísa Elísabet Sigrúnardóttir and ‘Last Time Around’ is one of the highlights of her newly released second album, Farewell Good Night’s Sleep. Having already achieved gold status in Iceland, the album was picked up by Nettwerk Records and released in the rest of Europe last Monday. It will get a US release on May 26th.

A self-confessed huge fan of Emilíana’s, Lovísa inhabits a similar musical terrain as Torrini’s less brash recordings, but with a good old-fashioned country music flavour that has seen her championed by the likes of Lucinda Williams and tastemaking radio station KCRW (who will be airing a session with her very soon). In the hands of producer Liam Watson, who recorded the album at his famously all-analogue Toe Rag Studios in London last year, Farewell Good Night’s Sleep successfully pulls off a fresh reading of Americana that’s not a whisker short of delightful. Like the singer herself, ‘Last Time Around’ is a gently unassuming treasure waiting to be discovered. Unearth it after the jump.

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in photos: beside the seaside with emilíana
March 15, 2009, 6:03 pm
Filed under: feature, special, stuff 'n nonsense | Tags: , , , ,

These were too cute not to share…

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emilíana torrini: the giggle & the drum
March 13, 2009, 3:11 pm
Filed under: feature, video, words in edgeways | Tags: , , , ,

wie_emilianatorrini

words in edgeways with emilíana torrini

There is a specific quality that is deeply embedded in pretty much all of Iceland’s sonic output. An intangible, mysterious quality that binds its artists together like a strong silver chain barely detectable by the naked ear but enough for the music press to pigeonhole them into the catch-all, if unimaginatively named, box of “Icelandic music”. No matter how tribal, shoegaze, electro, post-rock or plain old avant-garde any of its major stars venture, they’ll forever be “Icelandic music”.

There is one native artist, however, who despite her roots and undeniable patriotism has managed to outrun the confines of the label. Not because her work lacks any of those quintessential Icelandic qualities, but because she has kept herself on her toes and reached outside the “Icelandic music” comfort zone years before the sound ever really travelled overseas. Over her surprisingly colourful 15-year career, Emilíana Torrini’s early, naïve attempts at becoming a recording artist in her teens have inadvertently given her the freedom to have far more of an international appeal than most of her peers.

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