Sunday, May 31, 2009

Rockwell - Anni Rossi

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It's ironic that this should follow the Jarvis Cocker review, as Anni Rossi's debut album is also produced by Nirvana producer Steve Albini. Calling it a debut album might be slightly pushing it as it's got five of the six tracks from last years Afton EP and is less than ten minutes longer than that EP to boot.

That said, the duplicated tracks are not "duplicated" in their entirety; well if you're going to hire an expensive producer you might as well get your money's worth out of him. And, to be fair, it's a move that seems to have worked for the most part.

Her "unique selling point", that is her virtuoso Viola playing, is not lost in the shuffle but only the most eclectic of music listeners would suggest that the steadying hand of Albini hasn't improved matters.

The "old" tracks are probably account for most of the album's highlights; Ecology benefits from the addition of some keyboards and is about as mainstreamly catchy as you'll get on the album.

It's just a pity that most of the record companies promotion seems to revolve around her cover of Ace of Base's Living In Danger. Pleasantly cute it may be, but it's still nothing more than a novelty, no matter how "straight" Rossi treats it. That it follows perhaps the album highlight in the form of the creepy but eminently catchy Deer Hunting Camp 17.

You can't imagine this catching on with the wider populace, a la Feist, but that doesn't mean that it's not worth a listen, or ten, for a music fan with an open mind. And that's not just me being biased thanks to it's Icon-approved running time of less than 30 minutes - for once an artist seems to have realised that less is most certainly more.

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