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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Colour me stunned!, 25 Oct. 2009
By 
James Warner (London United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: New Worlds (Audio CD)
New Worlds - Charlotte Hatherley

The first lady of British Quirky-pop with a penchant for colour metaphore is back with her third solo album and she's as sharp as ever. After the finely crafted mini-epic feel of 'The Deep Blue', Charlotte has pared things down with a more immediate, instinctive sound.
Recorded virtually as live in the studio, 'New Worlds' opens with its first two singles. First up is 'White', with it's no-nonsense stomping guitar riff counterpointed by Charlotte's chilled-out vocals leading into a dreamy chorus. This is followed by 'Alexander', a lilting ballad which explodes into triumphant pop-rock. Next up is the strident rock 'n' roll work out of 'Straight Lines', possibly the most in-your-face track on the album, followed by the title track with it's vibrant, upbeat calypso-pop and a killer arpeggio guitar riff. By now, even the newcomer to Charlotte Hatherley's music will have cottoned on to the fact that her tunes rarely go in the direction you expect. However, 'Firebird' is one hell of a curve-ball, with its retro-whimsy conjuring up images of WW2 keep-your-chin-up sing-alongs. Track six is 'Full Circle' with it's brash opening punctuated by bars of prog rock guitar, followed by the lively 'Little Sahara', with its bouncing chorus featuring 'whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh's which could be straight out of an early XTC number. Track eight is 'Colours' - a punchy slice of pop-rock excellence which, along with the title track, would be my choice for the third single. Winding down, now, we come to 'Cinnabar', the most beautiful track on the album for which I would use the words 'lilting' and 'dreamy' if I hadn't already used them earlier in this review. Even here, there is a little wake-up call near the end to keep you on your toes. Finally, there is 'Wrong Notes' a track which evokes a sense of longing and apprehension, has a chorus which gives you goosebumps and ends with some wonderfully deranged guitar in the mix.
If you like your pop music intelligent, original and full of surprises, you'd have to go a long, LONG way to beat this album.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Left-Field Pop Alchemy, 21 Dec. 2009
By 
The Wolf (uk) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: New Worlds (Audio CD)
Charlotte Hatherley's last album 'The Deep Blue'
was a fine affair. A veritable Pandora's box of
shimmering elegance and ribald post-punk-pop mayhem.

With 'New Worlds' she gets straight down to business
with ten distinctive compositions which demonstrate
her admirable capacity to produce music of intelligence,
power and nuance.

The chugging opening chords and laconic vocal of opening
track 'White' brought Liz Phair to mind for a moment but the
impression was quickly swept away by the luminous beauty of
the song's gorgeous chorus. The delicious harmonies sound
as if they might be produced by four naiads swimming round
and round in a chocolate fountain.

In contrast 'Straight Lines' is as raw as it gets.
Big riffs, squealing feedback and more than a little
whiff of The B52s in the refrain. Canny and to the point.

'Firebird' is pure burlesque. A prickly, dream-like
composition from a music-hall at the end of the world.

'Little Sahara' captures the scent of the spirit of 1976
in the verses but Ms Hatherley manages, once again, to
cook up another harmonically otherworldly middle-eight.
It is this clever use of contrast which keeps interest alive.

'Colours' is perhaps the weakest track in the collection.
The melody and arrangement lacks definition and energy.
A bit of a make-weight truth-be-told.

'Cinnabar', however, is a wonderful song.
Richly textured and unpredictable, it is perhaps the finest
song Ms Hatherley has written in her career so far.
A perfect little alchemical wonder in fact!

'Wrong Notes' winds up the project in fine style.
The tonally off-kilter synth adds depth and intrigue
to another magically realised composition.

Left-field pop doesn't get much better than this.

Recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Difficult 3rd album?, 24 Nov. 2009
By 
N. Mcalister - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: New Worlds (Audio CD)
Difficult 3rd LP? Hardly!, this is another great album by Hatherley, again showing her muso skills to the full.

"White" is maybe not the best opener for this album, but it moves swiftly into the best pop song of 2009 "Alexander". From then on it moves at a fantastic pace, only throwing you when the off-kilter "Firebird" appears in the middle. It's a completely different sound for her, and has you checking the CD to make sure you really are playing the same album.

It's near-closer "Cinnabar" is the best track, it could last for twice or three times as long its that good, and shows a flair for production and dynamics most people forget to put into their music.

With the music presented here it is clear this IS Charlotte's best album to date, and it points positively to the future that she will continue to come up with brilliant music unheard of by about 99.9 percent of the ignorant general public. I am so glad to be in the 00.1 percent. If internet reports are true and that this was all recorded in 1 week of studio time, it deserves to be Album of the Year 2009.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In a just world, this album would be huge..., 2 Dec. 2009
By 
Nick (London, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: New Worlds (Audio CD)
I bought this on a whim after hearing the single 'Alexander' played once on Radcliffe and Maconie, and I'm so glad I did! I'm not sure how it fits into 2009 - it's more Go-Gos than Lady Gaga, more Blondie than SuBo - but it's definitely one of my albums of the year.

Upbeat, quirky, full of great hooks and enjoyable details, this little New Wave-y pop rock gem totally exceeded my expectations. Give it a go, you won't regret it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Needs a bit of work ..., 1 Dec. 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: New Worlds (Audio CD)
But this album is surprisingly good, I bought the album after hearing WHITE and ALEXANDER and on first listen I have to admit they were the only two I liked (the rest being ... unusual ?) but having persevered (I reccommend you do too if it doesn't 'hit you' straight away) I now think the album is really good and contains several songs with peculiar riffs that stay with you in your head for days !
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars grows on you, 13 Dec. 2009
By 
Andrew Ballard (Birmingham, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: New Worlds (Audio CD)
a very well crafted album, gets better after a few listens, as others have said, full of little riffs and musical flavours, charlotte hatherley rocks, oh yes :)
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New Worlds by Charlotte Hatherley (Audio CD - 2009)
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