Release Date: Oct. 12, 2010
A marked departure from her usual collection of reflective, intro-centric tunes, singer-songwriter Brooke Fraser draws inspiration from characters other than herself and opts for colorful storytelling this time around on third solo album, Flags.
Despite a change in songwriting methods and a more upbeat tone in comparison to previous efforts, fans will be glad to know that Fraser’s soft, lilting melodies remain intact. In fact, with a new voice, Flags comes armed with a renewed spirit and diverse catalogue of charming tunes.
The New Zealand songstress has come into her own with her latest self-produced record with a confidence that is apparent in her exploration of different instruments and soundscapes. Standout tracks include the piano-backed Aqualung duet, “Who Are We Fooling,” the ‘every girl’ track and Canadian shout-out, “Betty” (which could have been easily renamed to reflect any girl), and beautifully sparse “Sailboats.”
With Fraser’s drive to write music reawakened one night at California music festival, Coachella, it’s only fitting that there be a song in its honor and recognition. However, the gravity of the track may be lost on listeners who aren’t aware of the back-story. Kick-started by the Indio desert music festival and recorded and produced in the City of Angels, you could call this a real California album. (Wood & Bone)
[MP3]: Brooke Fraser – Something In the Water (right-click, save as)
Read more on Brooke’s approach to ‘Flags’ HERE.
**WIN a PAIR OF TICKETS to her show in TORONTO (PLUS a SIGNED COPY of FLAGS): ENTER HERE!
@ Madrid, Spain
If you haven’t heard of Lourdes Hernandez aka Russian Red, it’s probably because she’s also fairly new in her hometown of Madrid, Spain. She only has one release to her name: 2008′s I Love Your Glasses. And honestly, I have no idea how I stumbled upon this gem of a singer-songwriter last year, but I’m glad I did. There’s something very distinct about her voice. If you’ve heard it once, it’s immediately recognizable. It might have to do with Hernandez’s accent or the quirky way she stretches and bends her voice. While Russian Red’s sound might not be to everyone’s liking (some mind find it a tad grating like Joanna Newsom’s voice), if she suits your tastes, you’ll love her.
I’ve been listening her new track, “Loving Strangers,” non-stop since I got my hands on it. It’s probably my favourite track of hers (I love its subtleties), and I think it’s on the soundtrack to Habitación En Roma (A Room In Rome).
[MP3]: Russian Red – “Loving Strangers” (right click, save as)
EDIT: I recently had the chance to have a quick Q&A with Russian Red. Check it out here!
*KEEP READING: Russian Red – “Loving Strangers” LYRICS (after the jump!)