12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favourite Norwegian export
Lene's first three albums have become personal favourites over the last few years. After 30 years of listening mostly to rock and heavy metal I was surprised at how strongly I connected with this music when I first started listening to it. Lene's song writing is first rate and her relaxed and understated delivery is something that, whilst not always immediately appealing,...
Published on 29 April 2009 by Nick
4 of 17 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A huge disappointment
I totally disagree with the previous review - everyone's entitled to their opinion of course - but this album just does not hit the mark at all . To try to defend the dirge like , depressing atmosphere of this album by rebranding her as a " folk singer " is really not taking into account what her albums have represented thus far - a female pop singer that does the higher...
Published on 7 April 2009 by G. W. Walker
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favourite Norwegian export,
This review is from: Twist The Truth (MP3 Download)Lene's first three albums have become personal favourites over the last few years. After 30 years of listening mostly to rock and heavy metal I was surprised at how strongly I connected with this music when I first started listening to it. Lene's song writing is first rate and her relaxed and understated delivery is something that, whilst not always immediately appealing, really rewards repeated listening.
The first three albums all had their own unique feel to them and this new album 'Twist the truth' definitely moves Lene in a new direction but only subtly and that is entirely appropriate in the context of her previous work. All of the albums share Lene's characteristically strong and emotive vocals but this album is a little more eclectic than the previous releases with a wider range of musical instruments and styles brought into the mix. This is not the sort of music that you rave about but it is inspirational nonetheless and will be highly valued by those who know and love Lene's previous releases.
I haven't seen any promotion for this album. I only knew it existed because I drop by the Lene Marlin web site from time to time. I hope Lene has enough of a following built up from previous chart successes and live shows to support further album releases for a long time yet. I, for one, will always buy them.
As for choosing stand out tracks from this album, I'm really finding that difficult because they're all great. I love the lilting rhythms and hushed vocals on 'Everything's good' and I particularly like the unconventional but beautifully executed 'I'll follow'. Well done Lene...great job!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars No surprises here from Lene,
This review is from: Twist The Truth (MP3 Download)She can write simple, poignant balads in her sleep, but if it aint broken, don't fix it - and it's more of the same here.
If you take the early singles "Sitting Down Here" & "Unforgivable Sinner" out of the equation, she really has more resemblance to a folk singer than pop, relying on strong, slow, evoking balads - which is what most of her best work can be described as. Because anyone who's lost someone close through a death, or who's had any relationship problems (ie pretty much all of us) will find it very easy to relate to much of her lyrics, and her music complements her words well. But, for the most part, happy & chirpy it aint, so just don't stick it on before you're about to go out dancin on a Saturday night!
I fail to understand how anyone who liked her previous work can rate this album at 1 star. There's some very decent stuff on this new album, if you like this kind of music. The single "Here We Are" is worth a star on its own. Have a listen & make your own mind up but, if you're new to Lene, start with her best album "Playing My Game", because if you don't like that album then you'll be wasting your time with this new one. Ta.
5.0 out of 5 stars just what i needed,
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5.0 out of 5 stars Lena marlin twist the truth,
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5.0 out of 5 stars More of the same, but who cares when it's this good?,
This review is from: Twist The Truth (MP3 Download)Nothing ground-breaking here from Norway's best export, but that doesn't matter. Her understated, beautiful voice is as perfect as always and the songs are meticulously crafted. If you liked the previous ones, you'll love this.
5.0 out of 5 stars Lene's best so far...,
Twist the Truth is Lene's best yet. Some reviewers will say there's no "Sitting Down Here" to be found. Probably a good thing in this case, no hit single but brilliant music.
Lene has reached the point where a musician just wants to create great music and isnt just aiming for a hit. Let's the face, most of the charts can't really be classed as music anyway. So long as she sells enough copies to make more albums!
Can't wait for the next album Lene! :)
4.0 out of 5 stars Lene steps forward again,
4.0 out of 5 stars Definitely worth buying!,
However, the lack of electric guitars on this album should not put any listener off, because several of the quietest songs on this album are some of the best. Opening track "Everything's Good" is a warm, happy number, and the nostalgic "Do You Remember" is even more heart-warming, showcasing Lene's beautiful vocals perfectly. Second track "Come Home" and the uplifting "Story of a Life", two more acoustic-led numbers, bring in the drums and bass guitar to lend them some body, and all to good effect. Story of a Life is also one of the album tracks featuring a few electric guitar passages.
The strongest and most polished songs on the album, however, have to be "Here We Are" and "You Could Have". Here We Are was the first single taken from the album in Norway and it is evocative of Irish folk music, which lends it a distinctively 'bouncy' quality. Meanwhile on You Could Have, which marks the halfway point of the album, Lene adopts the role of the compassionate onlooker as she frequently does on her albums, and the lyrics to this track arguably make it the centrepiece of the album. You Could Have is the other track to feature the electric guitar, too.
After You Could Have, Lene bravely hits an experimental streak for a large part of the second half of the album. In places this proves to be effective, for example on the strangely groovy "Have I Ever Told You" and possibly on "I'll Follow", if hushed vocals and brass accompaniments are your thing. However, no Lene Marlin album would be complete without the singer taking a delve into the bleak (think "Fight Against The Hours" from Another Day and "Never To Know" from Lost In A Moment, for example), and on Twist The Truth Lene returns with some of her experimentation to those same murky depths. The result is the unconventional "You Will Cry No More" and the haunting "Learned From Mistakes". The former deals beyond reasonable doubt with the subject of war, and was probably written either as a reaction to the ongoing war on terror or possibly about the same soldier depicted in "Story", the tragic closing track on Another Day. As for Learned From Mistakes, this song has more optimistic lyrics than fourth track Story of a Life, but they belie the instrumentation on the song. The instrumentation is made up of doom-laden piano chords, twitching violins, spine-chilling use of synth and a hollow metronome keeping time in the background, something that only eases off when Lene's ice-cool chorus vocals cut through the gloom. If you're not used to listening to melancholy music, Learned From Mistakes will take at least a couple of listens to get into, but it'll have your breath suspended and your heart beating to the time of the song, as will You Will Cry No More.
So Twist The Truth has its stark tracks, but throughout the album it still contains those more upbeat and more positive numbers. Any fans looking for another "Playing My Game" here will admittedly be disappointed - it's unlikely that Lene will ever make another album like her first, partly because she's matured as a musician now but also because the level of recognition that her debut album brought her (around 2 million copies of the album sold worldwide) startled her somewhat. But give Twist The Truth a full, proper and open-minded listen before you jump to any conclusions, and then give it another listen. If you like any of Lene's other work, you'll like a fair amount of the work on this album, and you'll come to appreciate Lene as a versatile singer-songwriter who has lost none of her talent and ability to captivate but at the same time isn't afraid to explore new avenues with her music.
Keep going Lene!
4.0 out of 5 stars Norway - Dix Points !,
album 'Playing My Game' was my introduction to this
fine Norwegian singer/songwriter's world.
The experience was charming. I was hooked.
That charm is recaptured in her fourth studio album
'Twist The Truth', a collection of ten new songs which
really are quite delightful in their simplicity, warmth
and palpable sincerity.
Ms Marlin has a lovely voice. Clear as a bell, unforced
and totally unmannered. A pure instrument.
The roots of her songs are in the main folk-like in construction.
Musically economical, well arranged and lyrically satisfying.
Some believe her to be a little bland but I am besotted !
Highlights include opening track 'Everything's Good' the
lilting vocal melody, accompanied by gently intertwined
guitar and violin, is a consummately conceived composition.
'You Could Have' is a darker number full of pathos.
A sad story hauntingly told.
The brass arrangement on 'I'll Follow' is a strangely
affecting choice of accompaniment. A brave experiment.
Ms Marlin's voice is stunning in this very exposed performance.
Closing track 'You Will Cry No More' with its subdued
percussive march and surreally effective vocal harmonies
is an outstanding ending to an equally outstanding album.
The project is a breath of fresh air in every way.
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 4th album from Lene Marlin,
This review is from: Twist The Truth (MP3 Download)Lene Marlin's latest album seems to have been released with absolutely no notice to anyone. I only found out about it through a chance look on her MySpace, and as a fan, I was surprised to find no media coverage whatsoever for it. To many, this would be a fairly ominous sign. Why make an album and not promote it in any major way? Surely it must be useless.
But nothing could be further from the truth. "Twist the Truth" is a very mature, well written album that is impossible to link to the girl who released "Sitting Down Here" 10 years ago. Anyone familiar with Lene will know her for that first single. Its chart pop likeability made her a household name for a short time, until the mass market realised that this song was a bit of an anomaly for the Norwegian singer. Her music is largely slower pace, has been called depressing, sad and overly-emotional over the years, but these descriptions are always overshadowed by words such as beautiful, inventive, imaginative and wonderful. Lene is more of a folk singer than a pop artist, with only her sporadic singles fitting the description she has been given.
"Twist the Truth" has an even larger gap to pop than usual. Each of her three previous albums have had initial singles that could be instant hits on radio, such as "Sitting Down Here" and "Unforgivable Sinner" on the debut, "You Weren't There" on the "Another Day" album and "What If" on her previous release. This new record doesn't quite try so hard to appeal to the wider audience. Lene seems more comfortable to do what she does best - writes the songs that mean something to her. The first single, "Here We Are", is a sentimental song with stringed accompaniment, something a long way away from the upbeat distorted guitar of "My Lucky Day". Lene's vocal is the strongest thing on this song, so full of life and with that soft and enchanting range fans will know and love. Simply put, "Here We Are" is the perfect example of what to expect from the rest of the album.
And the rest is just as good. There are some new additions to teh sound style such as the occasional use of wind instruments and a lower, more bass style backing vocal on some of the songs. Lene Marlin is discovering little nuances in her own songwriting and putting them out there for display in a way that she hasn't done before. This maturity is perhaps somethign that has grown with her, but the album feels insprired. Nothing seems forced. Everything appears natural. And this is a first for Lene. As a fan of hers, I've often felt that there was the odd song on each album that needed to be worked on particularly hard to get right. The impression given from this latest LP is that it wrote itself.
Stand out songs for me are the wonderful "You Will Cry No More", which is the biggest departure for her yet, the more traditional Lene song and instant classic, "You Could Have" and the guitar and vocal only "Do You Remember", which reminds me of old Lene standout tracks like "Playing My Game" and "My Love".
The only niggle I have with the album is that there isn't one immediately striking song that makes you think - yes, this is brilliant. The album is made as one piece, a whole collective work, and that in itself is a triumph, but for anyone looking for a one track hit, it's hard to find one amongst the songs on offer here. There is no "Sorry", "Never To Know" or "Unforgivable Sinner" that jumps out amongst the others. And this could even be a good thing in a way. It shows that Lene is moving on to what she wants to do most, and that is, to use an over-used expression, tug us at the heartstrings and wow us with her hypnotically elegant voice.
"Twist the Truth" is essential for fans, and will certainly impress non-believers after a full listen.
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