Florence and the Machine‘s new album How Big How Blue How Beautiful saw the light at the beginning of the month after the drip feeding of a slew of singles. Florence intrigues me and I’m always interested to see in what direction she’s travelling in. Who doesn’t love her anthemic cover of Candi Staton‘s You’ve Got The Love? Although admittedly it was everywhere for a while and may have been overkill back then, but now it sounds great again. My favourite rendition of this track is when she buddies up with Dizzee Rascal. This puts a sparky twist on the song and amps it up a bit with Dizzee‘s rapid fire vocals. They are a perfect foil for each other.
When I was a young un Kate Bush was my favourite female recording artist. She was ethereal yet strong, had some crazy dance moves and The Kick Inside was the first album I bought with my pocket money. I was completely obsessed by the lead single Wuthering Heights. I played the album over and over and over much to my stepfather’s displeasure.
I see Florence as being cut from the same cloth, although her music is less experimental side and her vocals soar whereas Kate‘s spoke to me. What I do like about Florence is that she offers a different sort of role model to young girls and teenagers. She doesn’t play the ingenue or sell a sexy image as part of her music. She’s currently rocking the two piece trouser suit in her performances.
Her third studio album How Big How Blue How Beautiful is a foot stomping epic with a big sound. The title track has a beautiful orchestral arrangement featuring horns that serves as a great centre piece for the album. She sings of whales, relationship woes and things going wrong, Without a doubt she has a way with a melody and my favourites on the album are the dancy Delilah, St Jude, How Big How Blue How Beautiful and the epic rocker closing track Mother. I think on this album she gets the balance right with her voice. Sometimes when you’re blessed with a set of pipes it must be easy to just holler and whoop (aka Mariah) but here Florence also has some restraint so it might even win over those who have found her vocals too much in the past.
Here’s a slice of the title track How Big How Blue How Beautiful
Notes : Images : Featured Image : Vogue.com : Kate Bush : independent.co.uk