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Anxiety

Ladyhawke Audio CD
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
Price: £12.73 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Music

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Photos

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Biography

One of the brightest stars to light up the pop firmament this millennium is back, with a difference. Thanks to her brilliant self-titled 2008 debut, LADYHAWKE, aka Pip Brown, shot to stardom around the world, particularly in Britain and the Antipodes, where the New Zealand-born singer-songwriter soon gathered up armfuls of awards as THE breakthrough artist of the moment.
Her follow-up will ... Read more in Amazon's Ladyhawke Store

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for 9 albums, 16 photos, discussions, and more.

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Product details

  • Audio CD (4 Jun 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Universal / Island
  • ASIN: B007H70JHI
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 114,479 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Girl Like Me
2. Sunday Drive
3. Black White & Blue
4. Vaccine
5. Blue Eyes
6. Vanity
7. The Quick & The Dead
8. Anxiety
9. Cellophane
10. Gone Gone Gone

Product Description

BBC Review

Even a staunch Ladyhawke supporter could be forgiven for approaching this record with caution. For a start, there's the title. Calling an album Anxiety hardly smacks of self-confidence, especially when that album is the follow-up to a well-regarded debut. Critics praised the first Ladyhawke LP when it came out in 2008; pop buffs wanted it to sell better than it eventually did.

Nor is the title entirely tongue-in-cheek. Pip Brown, the singer-songwriter behind the Ladyhawke name, piled so much pressure on herself that making this album "felt like a two-year-long anxiety attack". Factor in several delays to release date and an ugly cliché slithers onto the tongue…

Thankfully, notions of a "sophomore slump" can be dismissed. Anxiety is a pretty cracking second album, though it's not the second album fans might have expected. The first Ladyhawke record worked a twinkly synth-pop sound, prompting comparisons to 1980s pop idols Kim Wilde and Cyndi Lauper. This is an album of fuzzy guitar-pop tunes. In fact, Anxiety features no synths at all, only some retro-sounding organ parts from Pascal Gabriel, Brown's co-writer/producer on all 10 tracks.

Ladyhawke still sounds like Ladyhawke, just tougher and more muscular, like Ladyhawke after a boot camp. She's broadened her remit too. Anxiety's reference points range from the 1960s psychedelia of album opener Girl Like Me to Britpop and beyond: closing track Gone Gone Gone cribs its vocal hooks from The Dandy Warhols' 2000 hit Bohemian Like You.

In between, there are power-pop gems aplenty. Sunday Drive is a wistful mix of Blondie and 1980s Fleetwood Mac. Cellophane aims for the widescreen grandeur of David Bowie's "Heroes" and doesn't disgrace itself. Blue Eyes is an infectious Joan Jett-channelling kiss-off.

Infectious is a key word here. The anxiety of the title may permeate the lyrics – one song acknowledges the connection between "self-destruction", "self-obsession" and "vanity", while another pushes its luck by rhyming "cautious" with "nauseous". But it doesn't affect the quality of the music: Anxiety is as tight and catchy as a baseball mitt. On this evidence, one thing that needn't cause Pip Brown anxiety is her ear for a tune.

--

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By Cuboid
Format:Audio CD
After one of the most sensational debut albums in recent years it's been quite a wait for this follow up, and the big question is, does it live up to it's illustrious predecessor? Well breathe a collective sigh of relief, because the answer is an emphatic 'yes'...and then some! Pip Brown, along with co-writer/performer/producer Pascal Gabriel, have once again delivered a truly sublime slice of thumping pop rock!
The enjoyable opening track 'Girl Like Me' has touches of T.Rex which leads to us to think that Pip is about to take us on a contemporary musical journey through the 70's in a similar fashion as she did with the 80's throughout the self titled first album. Indeed the excellent next track 'Sunday Drive' sounds much like a holdover from that first album, so no disappointment there then. The following tracks settle into a steady string of driving baselines and catchy lyrics - 'Black White & Blue', 'Vaccine', Blue Eyes' and 'Vanity' all top notch numbers increasingly cementing a sound not so much `80's' but simply 'Ladyhawke'. 'The Quick & the Dead' is a slightly darker number, but still in keeping with the album feel, as is the title track where Pip mixes a light, punchy score with some slightly more deeper lyrical content.
Then just when you think things are ticking away nicely into the final stretch comes an absolute show stopper - the beautiful, amazing, fantastic 'Cellophane', a standout track on what is a standout album.
'Gone Gone Gone' completes the album listing (another great track which could easily have featured on the previous album) but that's not the final number -'Human', a 'hidden' track, follows a minute or two later, and for a literal bonus it's up there with the rest of the proceedings.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good follow up. 4 Jun 2012
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Anxiety is a very good follow up album to her self titled first album. Filled with some catchy tunes on it that make sure they stand out in your head. The album is very "pop rocky" and a bit grittier than her first one, some might say it may have a bit more of a masculine feel to it. None the less, if you are a ladyhawke fan, get this album. You'll be pleasantly surprised.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ladyhawke rocks out - a bit! 19 Sep 2012
By GramP
Format:Audio CD
It was always going to be difficult to follow her acclaimed first album, perhaps thats where the anxiety in the title comes from! Admittedly, this CD slightly lacks the catchy riffs of the first, but compensates for this with a more driven sound. She rocks out a bit more on this album, more drums and guitars, some will like it and some will not but personally I love it. Anxiety has infectious energy and driving enthusiasm, the songs are a little darker and edgier, but still with that distinctive voice and singing style. All the songs on here are worthwhile, my personal favourite being Vaccine which mixes energy with great harmonies. Overall I think she deserves credit for not coming up with an imitation of her first album, you cannot accuse her of resting on her laurels. Ladyhawke rocks out on this one but without losing her unique musical style. In Anxiety she serves up a potent musical cocktail of energetic yet reflective songs, which draws me back in to listen repeatedly. PS I found the production on this very good although others disagree it seems!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great 2nd Album 28 Jun 2012
Format:MP3 Download|Verified Purchase
Looked forward to this coming out as Ladyhawke's original album is one of my all time favourites - a bit rocky, a bit chilled... fantastic (and if you haven't got it, I suggest you get it) [...]

This album avoids that difficult 2nd album issue that lots of artists have, managing to feel both a little retro, but also very modern in sound, and I think will be played regularly.

Favourite tracks are probably...

Girl like me
Vanity
The Quick and the Dead
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No anxiety about 'Anxiety' ... 17 Jun 2012
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Just took delivery of 'Anxiety' and listening to it for the second time. A very, very good album! Struggling to pick a fave track - loving 'Black, White & Blue', 'Blue Eyes', 'Vanity', 'The Quick & The Dead', 'Cellophane' ... !! Sadly too many promising acts peak on their first album and then struggle. Happily for us and Ladyhawke, this album is great and in my opinion even better than the first. Agree with other reviewers that the first was obviously 80s influenced with its Numan-esque synths, but this one skips forward a few years and draws more on the styles and sounds of the mid-90s. When I hear this album I close my eyes and I am at uni again in 1994, and can almost hear Elastica, Sleeper and Garbage in it while still reminining typically Ladyhawke, with her breathy vocals and melodic tunes with an undercurrent of barely-restrained electronic synth power and distorted guitars. Good work, looking forward to listening to it again when it finishes in about 5 mins .... Thank you Ladyhawke for reaffirming my faith in unique, talented and real modern musicians amongst too many soundalike plastic pop 'stars'! Now how's that third album coming along ....? ;)
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A 90s sound alike 12 Jun 2012
Format:MP3 Download
Ladyhawke's first album was a inventive and affectionate nod to the 80s. In the process Pip Brown gave us some memorable tunes that grew on you with each listening. This is very much her 90s album, but it simply doesn't grab you in the same way. Rather than sounding like a tribute to 90s music, it just sounds dated. This is Ladyhawke does Garbage, 15 years too late.

You can appreciate what she is trying to do, and if this had been more of the same from the first album she would have been criticised for being stuck in the 80s. But I was hoping for her to take the same sound further, rather than this change of direction.

That's not to say it's a poor album. It has some good tracks, and a good production. If you liked Garbage, you'll like this. That's no small recommendation as Garbage were a great band in their time. But a 90s sound-alike is not much to get excited about in 2012. A bit of a disappointment after an outstanding debut.
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