on 14 August 2004
Caught a song on BBC4 a while back and found my way to the disc. A twist of a traditional suite of songs both beautifully performed and creatively arranged. Novel but never showy would be the best way to describe the sounds, which center about a haunting blend of gospelesque backing vocals and spartan string and keyboard sounds. The product of a gifted singer with open ears and an exurberance in her craft. A debut that lies somewhere in the world of the esoteric beauty in minature of Bjork and the respect for traditional song forms found in some of the more interesting work of say Fiona Apple. High reccomendations.
on 9 September 2010
I bought this in December of last year, and these songs have stayed with me. To use the cliché, yes, they are lovely by name, lovely by nature. Mara's voice is utterly beautiful, so perfect, soft and melodic. The whole album is so comforting and peaceful, allowing you to just rest and notice the little things contained within it -- such as the use of the saw, the string section in 'It's Time' or the charming ukulele in 'Baby Bloodheart'. My two dissatisfactions with The Lovely are that: one, my favourite track, 'Pianni', is too short, and two, that the album has to end at all.
on 20 September 2010
You may wonder why I chose such a random title for a review.. but to describe it otherwise wouldn't do it justice.
If you are like me, you will agree 99.9% of music today is terrible. It's been so long since I heard a voice this beautiful, and music this honest. No auto-tuned rubbish, no cliche ghost written songs about the perils of men or remixes of old classics. This is why it stands out so much. Everything today is so samey that I find it very difficult to find anything worth the time (Lungs by Florence and the Machine being the last album I liked.) This album and the lovely voice behind it are something fresh, something truly good.
I really can not recommend it enough. I first heard her on the advert for IKEA, with all the cats. Just a taste of this wonderful album. It will be the soundtrack to my sunday afternoons for many years to come.
5 Stars well deserved.