Thursday, June 25

Regina Spektor- 'Far'

. Thursday, June 25

From Lily Allen and Kate Nash in 2006 to Florence and Marina in 2009 so much is owed to Regina Spektor. The eccentric New Yorker has paved the way and opened doors to any girl who wants to make interesting music off the beaten track that leaves critics grabbing at vague monikers like ‘kooky’. Now on her fifth album Regina is back to show all the pretenders how it’s done.

Having established herself amidst the quirks and kinks on ‘Soviet Kitsch’ in 2004 Regina met wider acclaim after signing a major label deal and releasing ‘Begin To Hope’, an album that saw numerous tracks used on the likes of Grey’s Anatomy (this is known as the ‘Gary Lightbody’s Goldplated Mansion Method’). Any criticism of ‘Begin To Hope’ however stemmed from it’s accessibility, the edges were smooth and the eccentricities muted. With those reservations in mind it’s joy to hear ‘Far’, a record that features amongst its treats Regina imitating a dolphin and telling the story of a lost wallet. Produced with Jeff Lynne (Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, Paul McCartney) and Jacknife Lee (Editors, Bloc Party) it sounds vaguely MOR and could surreptitiously work it’s way into a pile of CD’s at a dinner party in suburbia but dig deeper and the peculiar flourishes emerge pirouetting.

‘Machine’, sees Regina imagine what life as a robot would be like being “upgraded and downloaded daily” whilst ‘The Calculation’ ups the twee rating to ‘knitting in a library’ with the line “So we made our own computer, out of macaroni pieces” a line she gets away with by hiding it amongst killer hooks and melodies. ‘Folding Lips’ is the aforementioned dolphin song, a feat that if seen on Britain’s Got Talent would result in 3 angry X’s but is somehow right and normal in Spektorland. Calling Regina Spektor quirky and talking about her eccentricities is only seeing half the story though, she is a genuinely beautiful songwriter and ‘Laughing With’ and ‘Blue Lips’ are amongst her most poignant work to date, expect to weep into your cushion when character X dies on your favourite show and Regina’s haunting piano tinkles delicately.

Regina Spektor is the controller of her own destiny, driving down a crazy pavement and taking us all along for the ride. ‘Far’ is a unique and interesting journey that, whilst failing to match the highs of ‘Soviet Kitsch’ shows progression from ‘Begin To Hope’ and finds a nice balance between the odd and the beautiful.


Bookmark and Share



Post a Comment