I saw Little Annie last night supported by Baby Dee - both ladies supporting in turn Marc Almond on his 30 Years tour.
I had never heard of her before, and from the moment she staggered onto the stage, supported by a cane, and blasted out several songs from this album, I knew I was in the presence of a major talent. I was fortunate enough to meet her afterwards. I touched a star.
The problem with being the first reviewer is that there are no benchmarks, no point of reference for me to hinge my own, usually inadequate, responses from. Think Billie Holiday, but that's a little too obvious. Think Berlin torch songs, a voice ravaged by far too much of a good time. Is `Little Annie' a persona, an act - it doesn't matter. She comes from the same underworld of Marc Almond and Anthony Heggarty, a fringe world we'd all love to live in - but simply daren't. A world where the sequins are tarnished and the panstick is reapplied too thickly but it doesn't matter, the face never sees daylight. Turn the lights down and imagine a croaking voice, trembling with passion, singing of sorrow and loss and you've got it.
A real talent, a real genius. In our world of celebrity obsessed disposable X Factor idiocy, it's reassuring to discover that there are talented artists out there making music they feel and that in turn makes us feel. Thank you for the music.