Emilie Simon: Presents The Big Machine (Cartell)

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Emile Simon: Ballad of the Big Machine
Emilie Simon: Presents The Big Machine (Cartell)

Frankly I was stunned when I read a recent review of this astonishingly annoying, very ordinary album which awarded it five stars. That kind of rating I think should be reserved for albums you will be still listening to in a year . . . and a decade.

I found it hard to get through this one twice.

French singer Simon (known more for classy videos than her musical talent) brings to the table a high voice which reminds of Kate Bush without the nuance or depth, and this bounces across the top of slightly exotic retro electronica-pop.

Her relocation to New York seems to be the story here and maybe the tougher streets have brought some kind of edge to her observations (the moderately likeable Dreamland) but to suggest --as some have -- its antecedents include Laurie Anderson's O Superman are just bizarre.

Chinatown owes more to German electronica, or Gary Numan. Some Seventies techno bands might be demanding their songs back.

It is certainly some kind of ride -- the enjoyably mad Nothing To Do With You sounds like an offcut from a Broadway musical -- but over the long haul (and it feels loooong) Simon's chirping voice is very hard going.

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Matthew Phoenix - Aug 10, 2010

Experience can teach you many things, but apparently you haven't learnt that people are entitled to their own opinions. If you don't believe that this album is worth 5 Stars then that's up to you, but if someone else feels that it's worth 5 Stars then that's up to Them. Their opinion is just as valid as yours.

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