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Customer Review

14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bedsit music has never sounded so good!!!, 19 Jan. 2002
This review is from: Amplified Heart + Extra Track (Audio CD)
If you're a fan of 'bedsit' music then you can do no better than Everything But The Girl to give you a taste of life in the not so fast lane. Ben Watt and Tracey Thorn's world is one of loneliness, misunderstanding, confusion, emotional turmoil, and insecurity. This is probably why they have built up such a loyal fan base. They manage to connect with so many people by tackling taboo subjects such as these and the ultimate fragility of the human heart. They're sensitive souls, these two.
They are also incredibly talented, in a refreshing and delightfully understated way. 'Amplified Heart' just served to reinforce this view, which is one that I have held of them for years. Tracey Thorn has got a lovely voice, there's no other way to describe it, and she sings in such a soulful and emotional way, it is hard not to get totally absorbed in the songs she sings here. The opening track 'Rollercoaster' illustrates the world I have described previously and sets the standard for the rest of the recording. 'I still haven't got over it even now, I want to spend huge amounts of time on my own', is the opening line, and then later on she sings, 'I want to spend huge amounts of time in my room'. Everything But The Girl are the only band in history who can make wallowing in self pity sound simply wonderful. You get more of the same on the next track, 'Troubled Mind', which is a slightly faster pace than the preceeding track. The best thing about EBTG is that they make such great use of instrumentation to convey feeling. The instrumental breaks on 'Rollercoaster' sound like whining, but Tracey Thorn can get away with whining. Not many people can.
On the next track, 'I Don't Understand Anything', she is really crying out to be understood. Help her Ben, help her! 'Walking to You' follows, and Ben is heard on joint lead vocals with Tracey. Ben isn't the greatest singer, but because he is such a creative genius, he is forgiven. In any case, Ben and Tracey harmonise so well together it ends up sounding fantastic anyway. You then get more inner turmoil on the next track 'Get Me' on which Tracey pleads, 'Do you really get me?'. I think we do Tracey, I think we do.
Things cheer up a bit towards the end, with the excellent 'We Walk The Same Line' and the positive '25th December'.
The best tracks are probably 'Walking To You' (excellent harmonies), and two tracks solely written by Tracey: 'I Don't Understand Anything' and 'We Walk The Same Line', which demonstrate what a great songwriter she is as well as a vocalist.
If you live in a bedsit already you'll love it. If you don't, try to imagine what it's like with the help of this album. Or better still just enjoy the album for being 11 tracks of excellent, thought provoking music, from what are surely a still very underrated pair.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 23 Oct 2008 00:37:44 BDT
Good review :o)
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