Finally, here's the first part of my follow-up list of great Female voiced artists of the last 20 years. The original list was quite popular with the blogging public, but 20 entries is not enough to show all the great artists of the oast two decades, so here's some more.
"Cornflake Girl" - Tori Amos
Despite this being an absolutely sublime piece of music with a gorgeous Kate Bush-esque vocal happening here, I have no idea what she is singing about. Does that make this less of a great song? I think NOT!
"Perfect Family" - Diana Ah Naid
Tom Waits once said he loves pretty melodies telling him horrible things. No-one likes a divorce, except maybe a family court judge, so this song perfectly meets Mr Waits' criteria. It's a painful breakup song set to a bouncy summery melody.
"Treat Yourself Gently" - ISIS
Never has a lyric like: "I'm sucking your brains and your sucking my toes" sounded so sexy and appealing than it does in this great folk track from 3 lovely ladies from Brisvegas. This is an absolutely gorgeous piece of music that deserves way more attention on a national level than it did. It was heaps popular on 4ZZZ-FM and in Brisbane alternative music circles however...
"Connection" - Elastica
Elastica were swept up in the hysteria of Britpop in the mid 1990s thanks, in no small part, to lead singer Justine Frischmann being Damon Albarn's (lead singer of Blur) girlfriend at the time. The fact that she was also Brett Anderson's ex-girlfriend (she left the Suede lead singer for Damon) meant that all three bands hated each other. This was a hit from Elastica's wildly successful self-titled debut, but it's similarity to the Wire track "Three Chord Rhumba" landed the band in court on plagiarism charges.
"Ready To Go" - Republica
Yet another British band who rode high on the Britpop wave in 1995/6. This was by far their biggest hit, and little was heard from them again. This track has since been used in countless advertising campaigns, both here in Australia and overseas.
"Army of Me" - Bjork
This sub-industrial sounding track passed me by when it first came out. I always found Bjork's work too esoteric for me. I need to go back and listen to it again with fresh ears - from what I read her work is quite rewarding. This version features new backing from rockers Skunk Anansie. It kicks.
"Mercy" - Duffy
This demure Welsh-lady packs a powerful voice on this number. This one features a nice soulful groove conjured up by ex-Suede guitarist Bernard Butler, who produced this track.
"If Only" - KT Tunstall
Scottish songstress KT Tunstall will probably be mostly remembered for her hugely successful hit single "Suddenly I See". And while it is by no means a bad track, dig deeper and ye shall be rewarded. The aforementioned track was on her first LP "Eye To The Telescope". This track is a sublime piece from her equally sublime second LP "Drastic Fantastic" released in 2007.
"Challengers" - New Pornographers
The wonderful Neko Case, who was featured in the previous list, appears in this indie supergroup from Canada. For my money, Neko's contributions to New Pornographers albums have always been major highlights, and this one is no exception. This is the title track of the group's 4th LP, released in 2007.
"Come Away With Me" - Norah Jones
Norah Jones is still doing her thing apparently, still making great piano based music, but she doesn't get the media coverage that she did when her first LP was released on Blue Note records in 2002. This is the title track from the album and her sultry voice still gives listeners tingles down the spine all these years later.
"Don't U Eva" - Sarah Blasko
Sarah Blasko has had some remarkable success with her unique voice in Australia. Her first LP "The Overture and the Underscore" recieved plenty of praise upon its initial release and it remains a masterful piece of work. This is a performance of one of the most well known tracks from the album, from the SBS-TV program Rockwiz.
"Relapse" - Little Birdy
Vocalist Katy Steele has amazing vocal phrasing for her tender age, but she carries a voices that sounds like Norah Jones has inhaled helium. This is a great showcase for her insanely wide vocal range.
"Live Without It" - Killing Heidi
Killing Heidi were alternative rock poster children back around the turn of the millennium. And they literally were children - vocalist Ella Hooper was literally around 16 when the band was discovered by Triple J unearthed. Her youth in this clip is marked by her long black dreadlocks. She has since matured into a lovely lady who is always bubbly and bright in interviews, and has a killer voice.
"Perfekte Welle" - Juli
Surf music from Germany? Yep, I kid you not. This track is sung completely in German, and the title does literally translate to "Perfect Wave". It has a killer melody and a killer video. I'll talk about this one more in future posts - it is such a great song.
Until next time: ENJOY!