Saturday, August 04, 2007

This Is The Life - Amy Macdonald

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It's no secret that I've not been overly enamoured by the singles that Amy Macdonald had put out prior to this album, although upon reflection I may have been a little harsh. Yes, even a seasoned veteran like myself occasionally gets blasé when the latest "big thing" gets thrust in our faces.

The first thing I have to say is that I just can't get used to her voice. She can sing, don't get me wrong, but there are times when I cannot look past the fact that something weird is going on with her voice, to my ears at least. It's not an insurmountable barrier thanks to some very catchy songs, but I'd be lying if I didn't admit that it's a barrier that somewhat lessens my enjoyment of the album.

There are times, such as on Let's Start A Band, This Is The Life and, yes...I'll admit I was wrong, Mr Rock And Roll when Macdonald sounds on the verge of something really spectacular but sadly it's not promise that she capitalises on throughout her debut album.

Although the song titles alone suggest Macdonald has a lot to say, the overly earnest approach does begin to grate over a full album (what a difference a bit of Kate Nash esque joie de vivre on a few tracks might have made) and whilst in some ways the fact that Macdonald doesn't come across on record as the 19 year old she is may be a positive thing, it can also occasionally have the effect of making her songs sound a little too generic.

That said, like most reviewers have picked up on, if you're looking for something to tide you over until the next KT Tunstall record, this fits the bill perfectly. It also shows that Macdonald is a girl with genuine talent; she just needs to grow into it a little bit more. If she does, next time around the results could be spectacular indeed.

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