Random Bests of ’08, Part 2: Best Euro-pop Chanteuse

Emiliana Torrini

Me and Armini

 Emiliana Torrini
 Emiliana Torrini’s voice bears more than a passing resemblance to fellow Icelandic singer Björk’s instrument; particularly in full throttle in its upper register. It’s not surprising that Torrini substituted for Björk in the soundtrack for The Two Towers. And while comparisons between the two artists needn’t end at vocal signatures – they both have explored electronica in their arrangements for instance – Torrini has carved out a distinct musical identity for herself.

Her latest CD, Me and Armini, reintroduces a vigorous mixture of electronic elements and robust rhythms; materials she downplayed in her previous album, the stripped-down Fisherman’s Woman. But her voice more often serves as a calming force buffeted by these walls of sound – witness her captivating, understatedly cool delivery amidst the rocking accompaniment of “Gun.” The title track employs zesty reggae rhythms alongside a sultry vocal. Torrini returns to a primarily acoustic palette for “Big Jumps,” a catchy alt-pop single with a vocalize hook that dares you to not sing along.

   

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