Top positive review
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Worth a second purchase?
on 30 November 2010
It's always a bit irritating when an album is repackaged, additional tracks included and the new 'deluxe edition' hits the shops. The flip side of that is that you already know most of the tracks and sometimes the artist/record company have bothered to include worthwhile additional material.
I loved 'Lights' in its original guise - welcoming, melodic folky dance music with just enough production bite to keep things fresh and interesting. 'Starry Eyed' was a genius single but 'This Love (Will Be Your Downfall)' and 'Wish I Stayed' were even better. Standout track was 'Your Biggest Mistake', which employs sampled vocals to devastating effect - emotionally involving and a killer chorus.
But is it worth buying this again for the additional tracks and repackaging? Probably, yes - all seven additional tracks are worthwhile and add something to the album. Unlike Lady Gaga's deluxe 'Monster', which added a separate EP of tracks in many ways superior to the original album, 'Bright Lights' feels like a natural extension of the already existing collection.
There's nothing within these additional tracks to frighten the horses - very much remaining under the folk dance umbrella, there is nonetheless some evidence of a slightly looser sensibility - rougher around the edges, sounding less buffed into a precise shape. Standout of the additional tracks is 'Animal': the shimmering intro collides into a surprisingly bass-driven production. Running it a close second is 'Believe Me', which again places Ellie's lovely vocals against a bassier dance sound.
Current hit 'Your Song' is the final track on the album - it feels a little out of place here but it makes sound commercial sense to include it and does bring the collection to a melodic, stripped down full stop.
The new album photography is beautiful. Instead of abandoning the original 'lights' theme, these photos take it one stage further - full of ethereal warmth and a sense of wonder at the world, they reflect the best parts of this now extended and still excellent debut collection.