Friday, June 22, 2012

‘What We Saw from the Cheap Seats’ by Regina Spektor

22 June 2012

I’ve been listening to ‘What We Saw from the Cheap Seats’, the new album by Regina Spektor. I’ve written enthusiastically here before (in February 2010) about Spektor’s childlike voice and piano-backed pop/rock ballads. ‘What We Saw from the Cheap Seats’ is quirky and kooky but strangely endearing. There is a similar theatricality to her music to that of Nerina Pallot (reviewed her in May 2006) and there is certainly a touch of Björk about her. When ‘Small Town Moon’ breaks out of its wistful opening into a sudden rhythmic chorus it sounds a lot like the indie rock of Tilly and the Wall (reviewed here in March 2007). At first the impudence of the song ‘Oh Marcello’ in using the familiar words of the Animals’ ‘Please Don't let me be Misunderstood’ to a completely different tune seemed annoying, but the song has really begun to grow on me. The marmite quality of Regina Spektor is perhaps best illustrated by ‘Don’t Leave Me [Ne Me Quitte Pas]’ with its catchy drum-machine rhythm and cheery repeated chorus of “I love Paris in the rain” – I suspect you will love it or hate it!

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