Florence + The Machine
Rs 295,rating: HHHH
There’s an interesting story that Florence Welch loves to tell about how she became a professional musician. It goes like this. One day,a highly inebriated Welch followed DJ Mairead Nash into the loo at a pub and started singing. Fascinated,Nash immediately decided to be her manager. Theres little doubt that he found her voice magical. Its a powerful voice and one so amazingly flexible in its intonations. Take,for instance,the grungy pop song Kiss with a fist from Welchs debut album Lungs. As she sings,You smashed a plate over my head, one could swear shes singing through clenched teeth. But in the next line,Then I set fire to our bed, she cant keep the glee out of her voice.
The whole album is a showcase of Welchs ease with vocalising different emotions for different scenarios. In Howl,shes desperately in love,screaming in the dark when shes away from her lover and wanting to drag her teeth on him to taste his beating heart. In Girl with One Eye,shes sinister,and in Dog Days Are Over,delirious.
The backing band The Machine with its harps,drums,guitar and bass stays in step with Welchs mercurial vocals. That comes across vividly in the single,Rabbit Heart (Raise it Up). (It was alleged that Welch had lifted melody and lyrics from Gang Gang Dances House Jam. Welch said it was a tribute.) But that doesnt take away the fact that the song is art pop at its best. Its part Studio 54 and part New Age and completely experimental. If she produces another album as well-crafted and sincere as this,we have no doubt shell be the true successor to Bjork. firstname.lastname@example.org,/i>