Saturday, September 15, 2007

Set Me Free - Marion Raven

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If Avril Lavigne or Kelly Clarkson were Norwegian and were putting together an album of potential Eurovision Song Contest entries, Set Me Free by Marion Raven would probably be the sort of thing that would result.

And now I've got rid of three quarters of the readers of this blog, we can continue.

The salient points to get out of the way are that 22 year old Raven wrote (or co-wrote) every track on the album, she can actually play the guitar and piano and rather messily extricated herself from a major Atlantic Records deal so she could released the album she wanted to. Fact fiends will also be aware that she was the woman who accompanied Meatloaf on his terrible version of the terrible Celine Dion's terrible song It's All Coming Back To Me from Bat Out Of Hell III.

She's brought along a whole host of fantastic songwriters for the ride, including Max Martin and Chantal Kreviazuk and has also co-written with Nikki Sixx, who's called her "the most talented new artist I’ve worked with since I’ve been making music." Which probably says more about him than it does her.

The sheer weight of collaborators on this album means that anyone looking for a cohesive piece of work might as well go home. It does also mean though that whilst there are definite duff moments, there are also some sparkling ones too, with the pick of the bunch probably being the piano-driven 13 Days.

Far too often though the album is a little too predictable and unoriginal. There's nothing that's particularly offensive and if this all sounds like your kind of thing then you'll not be too disappointed with the album. Those who want a bit more might find themselves hoping that next time around someone might get Marion Raven to show a bit of restraint and focus on her strengths.

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