• Reviews For All Of Emilie's Albums

    21 Mar 2008, 21:43

    I have written all of the following for amazon.co.uk


    Opheliac (Double Disc)


    I found Emilie through Last.FM and the first album I bought was her classical/electronic violin album 'Laced-Unlaced.' After listening to her original compositions, and her own renditions of classics such as 'Largo' it was obvious she was a very well accomplished classical musician. So what did I expect of 'Opheliac'? Not this, that's for sure!

    It turns out that this album is pretty dark, and has elements of... well, I don't know what of! All I know that this album is one hell of a ride. Gone are her violin instrumentals, in with her vocals which range from beautiful, to bizarre, to down right terrible. Terrible in a good way. It appears that she doesn't care much if she sounds good or not, rather, she just wants to get her point across. I should try to describe the sound to you. There is classical violin, acoustic violin, and electric violin, mixed in with heavy beats and electronic mixing. Any authentic sound is probably some form of a string instrument. She hasn't the best singing voice in the world, but it's hardly the point here, she can still sing okay, and she mostly sings straight, but she has some unique vocal techniques and interpretations too. Worth checking out. It's a dark but catchy album. I'm not gothic, or listen to gothic music (the odd WT or Nightwish, but nothing serious) and I'd normally run a mile from anything like this, but it works.

    This album seems loosely based around the Victorian era and literature. Considering the connotations of the Victorian Era you get gothic like literature, murder of prostitutes, repressed women, darkness, industrialisation, etc. It's all here. How she conveys all in a sound I will never know, but as a Victorian Literature student, I think she pulls it all off amazingly well.

    There are two discs. The first disc is consistently dark. It's about madness, suicide, murder, rape, anger, alienation, death, stalking and the like. The one exception to this is the light-hearted 'Swallow' where you'll be forgiven if you initially mistake it as an early 90's Madonna record. It's very oddly placed on this album, but you won't regret it being on here. 'The Art of Suicide' is another one. It's not that happy, but the music is a contrast to the lyrical content. I understand people may criticise her lyrics, and since they are about such extreme things, it's a little wonder, but I DO wonder if those people understand the point of what she was trying to do, or how much they know about the Victorian period. There wasn't a lot of happiness for the Victorians, especially when translated into history. I think the lyrics are fantastic. Some people may recognise the story (and title) of 'Shalott' which is a direct rip off of Alfred Lord Tennyson's poem 'The Lady of Shalott'. Considering it's my favourite poem of all time, I was wonderfully surprised to hear it, and her lyrical adaptation is altered very well to fit in nicely with the rest of the album.

    The highlights of the first disc are definitely 'Opheliac' (Ophelia was a character in Shakespeare's 'Hamlet' and I think it basically means madness in this songs context), 'Swallow', 'Liar', 'I Want My Innocence Back', 'Misery Loves Company' and 'Let The Record Show'. For 'Opheliac', you will hear a song quite unlike you have ever heard before. It's repulsive yet appealing at the same time. She growls in the chorus, and I usually hate growls but it really works for that song. 'I Want My Innocence Back' is nothing short of terrifying, do not listen to alone in the dark. 'Let The Record Show' is sung from a point of view of a murdered prostitute. Although the content is dark, it's mega catchy. Her vocals on the verse is genius. The chorus is proper jumping if you have it up loud. Again, you wouldn't have heard anything like it.

    Now for the second disc. There's not a lot here (three songs, two violin, three spoken poems). Put aside 'Largo' and the three poems, which are all okay, I suppose, but not a great listening experience, you have the genius of 'Dominant', '306', 'Thank God I'm Pretty' and the hilarious 'Marry Me'. 'Dominant' is easily the best track on this disc. It's an instrumental with the violin and electronic mixing, it sounds like it should be part of a dramatic film score. '306' carries on from where 'Dominant' left off, it's not as good though'. The next two songs are comical. 'Thank God I'm Pretty' is Emilie's sarcastic gratitude for being pretty, it's not laugh out loud, but will make you smirk. 'Marry Me' is absolutely brilliant. Not only does she sing really well in it, it's also hilarious, and is based on Victorian upper class marriage. I suggest you find the lyrics and read along with the song, as there are very funny moments it. It's light hearted as well and her vocals verge on operatic during the chorus.

    The last thing I should mention about Emilie is that she does albums practically by herself. She doesn't have a team of songwriters, musicians, mixers and a production team she does it all herself. She writes, performs and produces everything. She is immensely talented, I hope she doesn't stay in the shadow of obscurity for too much longer even though I understand why she does. I doubt an album like this could ever be widely accepted by a mass audience.

    If you want to hear something different, you must buy this album, and do so with an open mind.


    Enchant


    When you come across Emilie Autumn fans, you may well find that many are divided. Many love THIS Emilie, the Emilie that they call the "Enchant Era" whilst others enjoy the "Victorindustrual" era. Bear in mind though, that there are not many people that enjoy the latter era and dislike 'Enchant'; it's a completely different type of music, but Emilie back then was still unique and this album provides us with music which is radically different to what she does now, but it's also different compared to anything other artist due to the albums eclectic material.

    This album is not pigeonholed for an audience; when the album opens up with 'Prologue: Across The Sky' you will believe that you have stumbled into a fairy wonderland which sounds like a bizarre collaboration between Enigma and Enya but as the album continues you were treated to mild blues/jazz like Second Hand Faith, rocky-pop numbers like 'Chambermaid', pop/techno/violin songs like the catchy 'Juliet' and pretty haunting ballads like 'Epilogue: What If'. I'd say that if you don't like the jazzy sound, you may not like the majority of the album, but there are enough songs on it without the jazz to pull this through for you. The standout songs are 'Across The Sky', 'Chambermaid', 'Rapunzel' and 'What If'.

    As to Emilie's performance - it is very different to her later CDs. None of this is rock or industrial really, she sings all the songs straight with her real voice (no growls). As to her violin playing it is highly played down on this album, but is obviously present in songs such as 'What If', 'Juliet' and 'Remember'. A lot of the album is electronic but a piano and violin can be heard pretty much throughout, even if not on the forefront. Unlike other albums, Emilie didn't do this album by herself so it's not purely her production wizardry and strong instrumental playing.

    Enchant has reached cult and classic status because there is simply a song on here for everyone but is hard to obtain. It has been more or less impossible to get until August this year when it was released again in a special boxset for a limited amount only (3000 copies). This is the same product, and if you don't snap it up now you won't get the opportunity again for a very long time, possibly never. As it is, the boxset (if you can call it that) is quite pricey and you may not regard it being worth your money, as you can buy the album legally on download through her website for a quarter of the price. The packaging comes as a normal CD sized book with a thin card board sleeve that covers it. Inside you have several pages but there is not much artwork to be seen, and there are zero photos. There is only lyrics written by Emilie's own hand, but it is barely eligible, so if you want the lyrics you will still have to log on the net and find them that way, despite having them in your hand. The CD itself does not have any bonus songs or material. It is exactly as it was in its original release.


    A Bit O' This & That


    This album is exactly what it says it is. Not a complete album in the ordinary sense, but a collection of b-sides, remixes, live recordings, and random things she recorded on a whim on a kitchen floor. Many of the songs are low quality due to the way they were recorded (not in a recording studio, put it that way). There are no songs here in the 'Opheliac' style.

    Many songs sound like cut songs from 'Enchant' and there are two remixes from the 'Enchant' album. She has done a universally terrible remix of Chambermaid (something she confirms in the notes herself) which sounds like a complete mess, and it opens the album. The second song and the second remix is a rather sweeter version than the original 'What If' with a celtic edge and it appears to be a different vocal performance. 'Hollow Like My Soul' and 'I Don't Care Much' are jazzy reject songs from Enchant. 'I Know It's Over', 'All My Loving' (a Beatles cover) and 'With Every Passing Day' all have very poor recording quality.

    Elsewhere we have the comical rendition of 'The Star Sprangled Banner' which she attempts to sing in her unique way. It's funny, but also a bit cringe worthy. In the notes she said she recorded it to show people that it was a bad idea to ask her to sing the anthem live. There are two live violin recordings of 'Sonata in D Minor' and 'Ancient Grounds'. There is a harpsichord instrumental of the classic 'Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life'. The song which would probably make most people want to buy this album is the single she released in 2001 which is randomly squeezed in called 'By The Sword' which is a poppy, rocky kind of song with a punch. For me, however, there are only two songs on here that are worth listening to, and that's the ballad 'Find Me A Man' and the Shakespeare inspired 'O Mistress Mine' which is a song that was originally going to be on a Shakespeare album she was working on, but scraped. Lastly, there is the song 'Miss Lucy Had Some Leeches' which is three songs, the first being an acapella of a children's playground game (like 'Oranges and Lemons' for example), a second song comes on which is short and sweet, and the third song has no music, just some very eerie/fightening noises. Her vocals are tampered with and layered.

    The packaging is exactly the same as the Enchant packaging that has been released along with this. It comes as a normal CD sized book with a thin card board sleeve that covers it. Inside you have several pages without photos and artwork, just Emilie penning notes on each song as to why she recorded it and what she thinks of it, which is a cute addition to it all.

    As one can expect with such albums, it doesn't carry much substance but there is the odd song that is worth listening to. Over all, I think this is a CD that only die-hard fans should buy. Casual buyers will not find much to appreciate here, and even avid fans may find it difficult to appreciate too.


    Laced/Unlaced (Double Disc)


    I have a deluxe edition where the two CDs come in a hardcover book, and there is plenty of artwork and sheet music for the piece 'Unlaced'. Looking at this one, however, this seems to be a simple jewel case. There are only 2000 copies of the version I describe, so whether you want that one, or you want to take a chance on this one (I have no idea what the booklet looks like in this case) then go ahead and buy this version.

    If you know Emilie through Opheliac, or the Liar/The Dead Is The New Alive EP, I should tell you now, that this album is not like that. This album is purely violin and production wizardry you would come to expect from Emilie Autumn. That is not to say that this album is completely different, as the second disc sounds like a complicated instrumental version of the Opheliac album. If you enjoyed Emilie's 'Dominant' from Opheliac and 'Unlaced' from the EP, there is no reason why you won't like this.

    About the album though. Generous as always, there are twenty-two tracks on this album. They come in two discs. The first disc is simply a re-release of the extremely rare first album of hers 'On A Day...' only, it has five unnamed live bonus tracks. This first disc is purely classical, based around her violin, most of which are compositions by well known composers such as Bach. Three of the tracks are her own compositions which sound very much like they go hand in hand with the other timeless classics on the album. These tracks were recorded when she was merely seventeen years old and showcases what a young talent she was. Personally, I prefer this first disc to the second, she throws her own arrangement and interpretation on to the pieces. Whilst she plays the baroque violin with charm and style, she is backed up with her distinctive other sounds of the lute, harpsichord and the baroque cello - just to make sure you get the full Emilie Autumn experience. She is distinctive, even with pieces that have been played by so many others.

    The first disc was recorded in 1997. So ten years on, what does the new disc, recorded in 2007 have to offer that is different from her first? Out with the old, in with the new. Emilie abandons the baroque violin in exchange for the electric violin. This time round, everything you hear on this disc is down to Emilie, she plays all of the instruments (including that distinctive harpsichord she is so well known for) and produced the whole thing on her own. I may be bold in saying, this is a disc that you have heard nothing like before. Genius in composition (she wrote all the tracks on this disc) and flawless in their execution, Emilie delivers a sound to excite the mind. It opens with 'Unlaced' which was a sampler for this album on her last EP which is dark, brooding and atmospheric. The albums continues in the same vain, there are no weepy violin solos here. All packed with energy, some dark, and some just plain bouncy such as 'A Cure?' 'Face The Wall' is probably the most fascinating piece on here as it is solo electric violin and is the demonstration of Emilie's refreshing technique with the violin.

    Both discs take some listening in order to appreciate the talent on display here. Some tracks may immediately jump out, whilst some are subtle. There is not one bad track on here. I'd highly recommend it to 'Opheliac' fans even if the fact there are no vocals puts you off - the style of the second disc is very much the same. If you love the violin, then there should be nothing stopping you here, as this is a new fascinating way for it to be heard. There is nobody quite like Emilie Autumn. I own a lot of violinist albums and no one comes anywhere near Emilie - not even Vanessa-Mae.


    Liar/Dead Is The New Alive (Double Feature EP)


    This was the last CD I purchased from Emilie Autumn as the two songs were not the most special ones from the album 'Opheliac'. Due to the extra tracks, though, I gave it a go, expecting the same quality that came with the second disc of 'Opheliac'. This is probably her weakest release. Remixes are never great at the best of times. Whilst some of the remixes create a different atmosphere, I sincerely doubt anyone preferring them to the originals.

    There are four original tracks not found on other albums - they are not of the quality you found on the second disc of 'Opheliac'. 'Mad Girl' is quite nice, and probably the best track on the album, it has a similar tempo to 'Thank God I'm Pretty' and the same kind of style, though 'Mad Girl' is less tongue in cheek. 'Best Safety Lies In Fear' is like a part two of '306'. It's mostly a jumping record of somebody saying 'If he says he loves you' and 'Best safety lies in fear' with a brooding background. 'In The Lake' and 'Let It Die' are live recordings and the production isn't great. They are of low quality in general, the first is repetitive to the point of irritation about a girl that has been buried behind someone's else in a lake. Typical Emilie topic, but not typical production wizardry, it being down to just her voice and one instrument (either acoustic guitar or Mandolin). 'Let It Die' sounds a lot like the other live performance.

    Also on this disc is a preview to Emilie's latest album (which is out now) - an electric violin instrumental called 'Unlaced' which used to be a primary reason to get this EP, but now that the other album is being released this EP may not be worth it. Do you remember 'Thank God I'm Pretty' from disc two of 'Opheliac'? She has put a cover version of it on here from an artist called 'Spiritual Front'. If that means something to you, great, if not, it sounds like the song is being sung by Leonard Cohen. The version is quite interesting, but lacks the humour and irony that Emilie provided. Plus, it's a bit strange for a man to sing such a song clearly written from a woman's perspective (do men smack other men's arses?).

    Bearing in mind, this EP is full of forgettable remixes and only four tracks you will find nowhere else, it is questionable if you should invest your money in this (which are quite weak). There is not much to take from this album but to complete a fans collection. I think this EP is more for the die-hard fans. Try to hear some previews before committing to this.


    4 O'Clock


    As active as ever, Emilie releases yet more new material for her die-hard fans to rip their teeth into which is continuing down the 'Opheliac' path regarding style and genre.

    Comparisons with her previous EP are inevitible, and this EP is the clear winner, for there are no 'repeats' (unless you put 'Organ Grinder' in that category, but this could only previously be found on the Saw III soundtrack) and this EP flows and makes more sense as a whole. Far more atmospheric than the Liar/Dead Is The New Alive EP. Generally speaking, this EP follows the exact format as its predecessor, giving us a few original tracks, some remixes from Opheliac and some random extras.

    The main focus is the title track, which makes this whole EP worth buying, regardless if you like the other tracks or not. Emilie has consistently tried to make her sound essentially Victorian Gothic, or, in other words, to bring us to her Victorian Asylum; this song succeeds with honours. The lyrics work on two levels: the literal and metaphorical. Metaphorically it tackles insomnia, but literally it takes us back to the Victorian period and the situation that women endured in lunatic asylums. With its regular chimes, brooding harpsichord and thoughtful vocals, this quirky, gothic half-ballad treats us to a haunting listening experience.

    'My Fairweather Friend' is somewhat of an echo of 'In The Lake' from the L/DITNA EP. It's a bit of a filler that would have suited her 'A Bit o' This & That' album. The upshot of this EP is the fewer remixes, but even so, these remixes are rather good, particularly the Filthy Victorian Mix of 'Swallow' (one of the firm favourite songs from 'Opheliac' of many fans). The 'Swallow' remixes rely heavily on the extroverted bass lines which gives them a refreshing boost. The remix of 'Gothic Lolita' is genuinely freaky. As the title of the remix suggests, less emphasis on music is displayed and is replaced with frightening sound effects with a little and faint violin playing throughout.

    Many fans will be pleased to find 'Organ Grinder' on here, previously available, but hard to get hold of, nonetheless. For those unfamiliar with it, it is a fast paced electric violin piece in the same vein as the 'Unlaced' album.

    The words from 'Asylum' is purely Emilie reading out excerpts from her upcoming book - a shameless plug (why not, on your own CD?) which people are not likely to appreciate. They are read out with the same production as her poetry from the 'Opheliac' album. Her acting voice can be a bit grating, and the sound effects and her leaning away from the mic can make actual listening very distracting.

    There is a hidden track as track nine (it starts off sounding like it continues from the book reading, the song actually starts 40 seconds in). A cover of Alice Cooper's 'Is It My Body'. Performed with Harpsicord and electrical sounds and too quiet vocals, it can be quite entertaining, but there is a good reason that it is merely hidden and not advertised.

    Overall, I would say this EP is well worth buying. The title track is excellent, and the remixes memorable. The book reading and the second track let this disc down a bit but it is a fine addition to an Emilie Autumn collection.

    Emilie Autumn
  • Be Negative About Your Top 20

    13 Mar 2008, 17:45

    Saw this going round. I'm bored. Have an essay to write. So here we go.

    DISCLAIMER: I LOVE ALL OF THESE PEOPLE

    1. Emilie Autumn
    She is too obscure. It's hard to get her albums, and they are always really expensive. And I queued for three hours for a meet and greet once, but she was two hours late and I was turned away as soon as I got to the door. I was so pissed off with her at that moment.

    2. Sarah Brightman
    She can't seem to sing as well as she used too. Her voice has really suffered throughout the years and overworking. And her latest album was a recycling of her previous ideas.

    3. Keedie
    She didn't sell enough albums, and so was dropped. She has been trying to get back on the wagon ever since, so to speak. No one has heard of her despite her being a great talent.

    4. Josh Groban
    Such a cheesy crooner! Can't resist the voice though, you know...

    5. Patrick Doyle
    Favourite soundtrack composer ever, but his Harry Potter soundtrack is my least favourite of all the HP soundtracks. :(

    6. Andrew Lloyd Webber
    Money grabbing, repititive, silly person.

    7. Jean-Yves Thibaudet
    I thought he composed 'Pride and Prejudice', but he didn't! He just played the piano! It's a mistake, Dario Marianelli should be here!

    8. Cantamus
    Not enough albums, not enough live shows, not enough original compositions.

    9. Alanis Morissette
    She has some gems, but most of her albums are padded out with fillers.

    10. Emma Shapplin
    Who is she?! Will she make any more albums? No one knows!

    11. Lesiëm
    They got in my top 20 when I accidently left my computer running on their album over a weekend. They only have one decent song. :(

    12. Era
    I don't like the direction their last album took. But that was four years ago...

    13. Gregorian
    95% of their material are covers.

    14. Ennio Morricone
    I only like 'The Mission' soundtrack.

    15. Within Temptation
    Their last album was so Evanescence.

    16. Sweetbox
    Jade left. :( Jade left. :( GAH.

    17. Nobuo Uematsu
    His Nintendo work really sucked (apart from VI).

    18. Hayley Westenra
    Pretty voice, but she is the blandest singer I have ever heard. Her arrangements are god boring as well. Background music.

    19. Hans Zimmer
    I don't like his soundtrack for PotC at all.

    20. Nightwish
    I could be here all day being negative about this group. Ultimately, I think they are bunch or bastards for the way they sacked Tarja. Their new music is a complete regression (for my tastes) and the idea of Anette singing classic Nightwish songs brings chills to my bones.
  • The Soundtrack To My Life

    3 Ene 2008, 22:34

    haven't written this out to be egotistical, it's just a person reference for myself when I look back in life. I think the music we like and listen to says a lot about who we are. If there was a soundtrack to my life, this would be it, basically.

    1. Lyrically Relevant Tracks To My Life

    Love's Never Easy -A. R. Rahman
    Belle (reprise) - Alen Menken
    That I Would Be Good - Alanis Morissette
    Doth I Protest Too Much - Alanis Morissette
    Friends For Life - Amy Nuttall
    What Makes You Different (Makes You Beautiful) - Backstreet Boys
    Prayer - Becky Jane Taylor
    Innocent Eyes - Delta Goodrem
    I'm Not a Girl, Not Yet a Woman - Britney Spears
    I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For - Cantamus
    That's the Way It Is - Celine Dion
    Finding My Own Way - Charlotte Church
    What If - Emilie Autumn
    Storm Inside - Laura Michelle Kelly
    Frozen - Madonna
    Raging Child - Mary Fahl
    Bitch - Meredith Brooks
    Who Knew - Pink
    Something To Be - Rob Thomas
    Someone Like You - Russell Watson
    Fear - Sarah McLachlan
    All Good Things - Sissel
    Here Comes The Sun - Sweetbox
    For The Lonely - Sweetbox
    Read My Mind - Sweetbox
    Crown of Thorns - Sweetbox
    How Soon Is Now? - t.A.T.u.
    All I Need - Within Temptation
    See Who I Am - Within Temptation
    Stand My Ground - Within Temptation

    2. Philosophies I Live By:

    You Learn - Alanis Morissette
    Our Kind of Love - Andrew Lloyd Webber
    Let Us Love in Peace - Andrew Lloyd Webber
    Treat Her Like A Lady - Celine Dion
    Where Is the Love - Celine Dion
    Love Is All We Need - Celine Dion
    All Love Can Be - Charlotte Church
    Easy Way Out - Charlotte Church
    Can't Hold Us Down - Chrsitina Aguilera
    Fighter - Christina Aguilera
    The Voice Within - Christina Aguilera
    Circle of Life - Elton John
    Return to Innocence - Enigma
    Misere Mani - Era
    Where Will You Go - Evanescence
    Don't Stop - Fleetwood Mac
    You're the Voice - G4
    Moment Of Peace - Gregorian
    Dare You to Move - Switchfoot
    You Are Loved (Don't Give Up) - Josh Groban
    Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep - Katherine Jenkins
    The star in you - Keedie
    Umbrella - Rihanna
    There Is More To Love - Sarah Brightman
    Winter In July - Sarah Brightman
    Meadowlark - Sarah Brightman
    Who Wants To Live Forever - Sarah Brightman
    Testimony - Sweetbox
    Everybody - Sweetbox
    Not Different (I Laugh I Cry) - Sweetbox
    Everything's Gonna Be Alright - Sweetbox
    Whistle Down The Wind - Tina Arena
    You Made Me Find Myself - Tina Arena
    What You Do - Triniti
    Heroes Live Forever - Vanessa Amorosi nb. minus the religious connotations.
    Forgiven - Within Temptation

    3. Inspirational and/or Moving:

    I Find Your Love - Beth Neilson Chapman
    Hurt - Christina Aguilera
    Papa Can You Hear Me? - Charlotte Church
    I'm Gonna Be Strong - Cyndi Lauper
    Dominant - Emilie Autumn
    Across the Sky - Emilie Autumn
    Anymore - Emmy Rossum
    Over The Rainbow - Eva Cassidy
    Don't Give Up - Gregorian
    Dark Waltz - Hayley Westenra
    Into the West - Annie Lennox
    Un Bel di Vedremo - Izzy
    Flying - James Newton Howard
    Liz on Top of the World - Dario Marianelli
    Both Sides Now - Joni Mitchell
    To Where You Are - Josh Groban
    Vide cor meum - Katherine Jenkins
    Because of You - Kelly Clarkson
    Butterfly Kisses - Lauren Waterworth
    Probably Wouldn't Be This Way - LeAnn Rimes
    Somewhere Over The Rainbow - Leona Lewis
    Bring Him Home - Michael Ball
    The Poet and the Pendulum - Nightwish
    The Oath - Nobuo Uematsu
    Advent: One-Winged Angel - Nobuo Uematsu
    Kindle My Heart - Patrick Doyle
    Dear Mr President - Pink
    Figlio Perduto - Sarah Brightman
    Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again - Sarah Brightman
    No One Like You - Sarah Brightman
    Nothing Compares 2 U - Sinéad O'Connor
    For You - The Calling
    Fast Car - Tracy Chapman
    Our Farewell - Within Temptation
    Bittersweet - Within Temptation

    4. Music That Built A Bridge To A New Genre/Artist:

    The Phantom of the Opera - Andrew Lloyd Webber
    Bed of Roses - Bon Jovi
    Falling - Balligomingo
    Opheliac - Emilie Autumn
    La Notte Etterna - Emma Shapplin
    Gravity of Love - Enigma
    Paint The Sky With Stars - Enya
    Madona - Era
    Eyes On Me - Faye Wong
    Bleed To Love Her - Fleetwood Mac
    Now We Are Free - Hans Zimmer
    Alla Luce Del Sole - Josh Groban
    Sleeping Sun - Nightwish
    Wanderer of Time - Nobuo Uematsu
    Deliver Me - Sarah Brightman nb. This changed my whole view and taste in music back in 2001, it's responsible for my whole chart!
    Television - Stabbing Westward
    Stigmatised - The Calling
    Silent All These Years - Tori Amos
    Everything You Want - Vertical Horizon
    Memories - Within Temptation

    5. Misc:

    All For Laura - Andrew Lloyd Webber nb. This is a song from the musical 'The Woman In White' and is the most moving. The musical is important, because if it was never made, I wouldn't be studying Literature, and I wouldn't know of my favourite author, Wilkie Collins, a Victorian novelist.
    Shalott - Emilie Autumn nb. I love this song because it is based on my favourite poem of all time: The Lady of Shalott by Alfred Lord Tennyson, a Victorian poet (I love the Victorians)
    Wuthering Heights - Hayley Westenra nb. I might as well call the section the Victorian section! Inspired me to read one of my favourite books by Victorian writer Emily Bronte.
    Leave - Matchbox Twenty nb. Simply reminds me of someone and of a certain point in my life.
  • Are They Really Your Favourite Artists?

    6 Dic 2007, 11:55

    Fill out the following template for your top 25 artists:

    Template for each artist:
    First song you heard:
    Favourite song:
    Favourite album:
    Accuracy:

    1. Emilie Autumn
    First song you heard:Opheliac
    Favourite song: Prologue: Across the Sky
    Favourite album: Laced/Unlaced
    Accuracy: Definitely, definitely! I only discovered Emilie six months ago, and she quickly rampaged through the ranks of my most listened list. I have five her of CDs and I positively love them all, though they are all drastically different from one another.

    2. Sarah Brightman
    First song you heard: Deliver Me
    Favourite song: No One Like You
    Favourite album: Timeless
    Accuracy: Sarah has been my favourite artist for the past six years, before I discovered Emilie. She hasn't released an album in five years, though one is due in two months time, which is probably why she has been lagging in my listening chart over the past eight months or so.

    3. Keedie
    First song you heard: I Believe My Heart
    Favourite song: My Reason - theme from Modgliani
    Favourite album: I Believe My Heart
    Accuracy: Yes, third is accurate. She could be higher if she released more material, but as it is, she has only released one album, and I rely on new material being sent to me as she does it (I run her MySpace and her website).

    4. Josh Groban
    First song you heard: For Always
    Favourite song: To Where You Are
    Favourite album: Awake
    Accuracy: I do love Josh Groban, he has such a beautiful voice, but I do think he should be a lot lower, becaue most of his material leaves a lot to be desired.

    5. Andrew Lloyd Webber
    First song you heard: Any Dream Will Do
    Favourite song: A Kiss Is A Terrible Thing To Waste
    Favourite album: Whistle Down The Wind
    Accuracy: I think Lord ALW should be one place up. I tend to love all of his musicals, including the lesser known ones.

    6. Jean-Yves Thibaudet
    First song you heard: Dawn
    Favourite song: Liz on Top of the World
    Favourite album: Pride and Prejudice
    Accuracy: I guess this is not at all accurate. For the longest time, I thought this man had composed the soundtrack to Pride and Prejudice, but I found later, that he had merely played the piano for the soundtrack and did not compose it. I feel cheated! This should be Dario's place, and if it was, he would deserve 6th place for the sheer genius of that soundtrack!

    7. Cantamus
    First song you heard: Aurora
    Favourite song: Aurora
    Favourite album: Aurora
    Accuracy: About six months ago, this choir were number 18 on my charts. Number 7 is a lot more like it. I love this choir just a little too much. Though the above answers seems to point just to one song I love the albums consistently that they have brought out so far.

    8. Emma Shapplin
    First song you heard: Spente Le Stelle
    Favourite song: Spesso, Sprofondo
    Favourite album: Etterna
    Accuracy: Yes, I love Emma to bits. Only two albums and an EP but her voice is just so beautiful...

    9. Alanis Morissette
    First song you heard: Ironic
    Favourite song: That I Would Be Good
    Favourite album: Jagged Little Pill
    Accuracy: I actually only discovered her recently! I knew about her, and I remembered Ironic from when I was about 10, but I only recently started listening to her music properly, and I love her.

    10. Lesiem
    First song you heard: Roma
    Favourite song: Roma
    Favourite album: Illumination
    Accuracy: They shouldn't even be in my top 50. They have one or two songs I like, and they are not exactly amazing. They have so many plays because I accidently left them running when I went out for a night, and I didn't come back until 24 hours later.

    11. Era
    First song you heard: Madona
    Favourite song: Omen Sore
    Favourite album: Era 2
    Accuracy: I love this group. I came across them about 6 years ago when I randomly downloaded one of their tracks without knowing what it was (the good old days of Napster before there was a law suit, remember?) They sounded so different to anything else. I still love them, now. :)

    12. Ennio Morricone
    First song you heard: Gabriel's Oboe
    Favourite song: Evening Falls
    Favourite album: The Mission
    Accuracy: I love this guy. Not only for the soundtracks, but for the adaptations he inspired for other artists, including Sarah Brightman's extremely famous Nella Fantasia However, he is not my favourite music composer, and should be below Patrick Doyle and Hans Zimmer.

    13. Within Temptation
    First song you heard: Memories
    Favourite song: What Have You Done
    Favourite album: The Silent Force
    Accuracy: They should probably be higher up in my chart. Apart from belonging to just one genre, this band represent perfection for me. They do everything that I look for in this kind of genre.

    14. Gregorian
    First song you heard: Don't Give Up
    Favourite song: The Gift
    Favourite album: Masters of Chant Chapter IV
    Accuracy: Yes, I love this group. Fundamentally, they are a group of pretend monks that cover popular modern classics in chant, but they sometimes branch off with their own material and with wonderful female vocalists (Violet and Sarah Brightman).

    15. Nobuo Uematsu
    First song you heard: Terra's Theme
    Favourite song: One Winged Angel
    Favourite album: Final Fantasy S Generation
    Accuracy: My favourite game composer. I have pretty much loved every soundtrack he has done, but he is sometimes inconsistent. 15th place is about right.

    16. Sweetbox
    First song you heard: Everything's Gonna Be Alright
    Favourite song: Bold And Delicious
    Favourite album: Addicted
    Accuracy: As far as pop goes, these are my favourite. They used to be a lot further up, but I haven't been into much pop as of late.

    17. Patrick Doyle
    First song you heard: Weep You No More Sad Fountains
    Favourite song: The Attic
    Favourite album: A Little Princess
    Accuracy: He should be so much further up. He composed my favourite soundtrack of all time, 'A Little Princess' and I consistently love all of his compositions. I even went to see him live in concert.

    18. Hayley Westenra
    First song you heard: Pokarekare Ana
    Favourite song: Dark Waltz
    Favourite album: Pure
    Accuracy: Should probably be further down. She is very talented and has a lovely voice, but she is kind of bland.

    19. Hans Zimmer
    First song you heard: Now We Are Free
    Favourite song: Now We Are Free
    Favourite album: Gladiator
    Accuracy: I consistently like all of his soundtracks. Gladiator and The Lion King are my favourites. I think he should be above Ennio Morricone, but he is roughtly the right place.

    20. Nightwish
    First song you heard: The Phantom of the Opera
    Favourite song: Sleeping Sun
    Favourite album: Oceanborn
    Accuracy: I think I am a fan of Nightwish… I am not sure. I certainly like a select few of their songs a hell of a lot, though.

    21. Matchbox Twenty
    First song you heard: Feel
    Favourite song: Hand Me Down
    Favourite album: Mad Season
    Accuracy: I have really neglected alternative rock for a while. But for that genre, this band is my favourite, but that genre can't compete with the others I have here. Probably the right place for them.

    22. Enigma
    First song you heard: Gravity of Love
    Favourite song: T.N.T. For The Brain
    Favourite album: Le Roi Est Mort, Vive Le Roi!
    Accuracy: Should probably be further up. I love them from their first album to their fourth, but their last two albums are awful. I listen to the others a lot though.

    23. Leona Lewis
    First song you heard: Somewhere Over The Rainbow
    Favourite song: Run
    Favourite album: Spirit
    Accuracy: I love Leona. I don't like the album. She has a fantastic voice, and I'll keep my eye on her, but a lot of the plays are down to her live version of Somewhere Over The Rainbow, her rendition of 'Run' by Snow Patrol, and Bleeding Love. Her album was such a disappointment.

    24. Sarah McLachlan
    First song you heard: Don't Let Go
    Favourite song: Fear
    Favourite album: Afterglow
    Accuracy: She should be a lot further up. I only discovered her recently, and am waiting on some more albums that I will receive at Christmas.

    25. Katherine Jenkins
    First song you heard: Questo e Per Te
    Favourite song: Vide cor meum
    Favourite album: Serenade
    Accuracy: I'm always on the fence about Katherine. She is a not a great classical singer, and her albums are consistent with predictable material, but some songs just hit the jackpot. She should probably be lower down.
  • Expensive artists!

    26 Ago 2007, 15:56

    If you have, say, six albums from a mainstream artist, you probably spent £8 per album, so that would cost you less than £50. Check out some artists who slap more value on their price tags:

    Sarah Brightman -
    With thirty-three CDs in my collection, with a futher countless amount of CDs that she has merely guest stared on, not to mention a dozen DVDs, Sarah Brightman has clearly got the most money out of me. Most of her CDs were regular price, but then there were ultra rare ones (like Fly II and Harem: Limited Tour Edition) which cost a bit more than your average CD. Then there are imports - tracks you cannot get by buying the local release - so I have Japanese and Taiwan editions of some albums. Then there are musicals that she appeared in which are always more than the average price. THEN there are the Gregorian CDs. Some of these (the first ones) are available in the UK, but most of the time, I have to import them from Germany, which will always but another £10 on the price - I have eleven Gregorian CDs. There are also singles to buy - I tend not to buy them, but they are always more expensive than the actual albums, due to their rarity. The DVDs/VHS were also expensive - most were your average £12, but others were a bit more rare and cost that little bit more. I'm not a merchandise kinda girl, but I have seen her live twice (never cheap) and I bought a signed poster, and two signed lithographs which were £60.

    Estimated cost of artist: £770

    Andrew Lloyd Webber -
    Nine DVDs, fifteen full length soundtracks, one boxset, and countless compilations. Full length soundtracks are NEVER cheap. In highstreet shops they are normally £20 each, and his Now And Forever Boxset was double that price. I have some rare DVDs as well (By Jeeves, The Andrew Lloyd Webber Collection). I have also gone to see five of his musicals which are always a hefty £50 each (and most of the time I have to pay for two tickets so someone will come with me!)

    Estimated cost of artist: £600

    Nobuo Uematsu
    I do not even own that many CDs of his. It's the fact that his CDs normally cost £30 each as they are imported from Japan and are massive soundtracks - if not, they are rare compilation albums that now go for over £150 (though I didn't pay that for them). I only have seven of his CDs, believe it or not, but my estimate is at:

    Estimated cost of artist: £170

    Gregorian
    I have ten albums, one single, and one DVD. With the exception of the first two albums, all of the others are rare, and hard to get in the UK. It takes a trip to amazon.de to get my fix on this group which always lays an import charge.

    Estimated cost of artist: £160

    Sweetbox
    Although this artist is based in Europe, and has had top ten hits in the UK, I do not think any of their albums have been released locally in the UK. I have a mere seven albums of Sweetbox, but they are all imports from Japan. Japanese imports are probably the most expensive type of CD.

    Estimated cost of artist: £100

    Emilie Autumn
    Another artist I do not have many albums of, though I have seen her live once. She is cult and her CDs are normally limited edition to about 2000 or 3000 copies world wide. She seems to think this justifies her selling her albums at £20 per pot though she releases locally in the UK. I have only five of her albums (one of them is an EP), and the shocking total is at:

    Estimated cost of artist: £100

    Within Temptation
    Four albums, one EP, three singles. Based in Europe and with some releases in the UK, they are actually not that costly, but rare singles puts their tally up for 'Running Up That Hill' and the five track edition of 'Angels'.

    Estimated cost of artist: £80

    Faye Wong
    A Chinese artist. Two albums. Really simple. One is a best of compilation, the other is a boxset which I bought off the highstreet, so there was mercy regarding postage and packaging, yet she still has made my pocket £60 lighter.

    Estimated cost of artist: £60
  • Top Artists

    7 Ago 2007, 12:03

    01. How did you get into #31 ?
    Sarah McLachlan - Just kept hearing her name. Eventually heard her singing on the 'Spirit' soundtrack with Bryan Adams. After hearing 'Angel' and 'Good Enough' I finally purchased 'Fumbling Towards Ecstacy'. It's still the only album of hers I have, but I want the whole lot.

    02. What was the first song you ever heard by #22 ?
    Enigma - It was probably Sadeness whilst I was growing up, but in my conscious years it was 'Gravity of Love'.

    03. What's your favorite lyric by #41 ?
    Becky Jane Taylor - "Church or temple or Ka'ba stone/Koran or Bible or Martyr's bone/All these and more my heart can hold/For my faith is now in love alone."

    04. What is your favorite album by #49 ?
    Triniti - They have only released one, so I guess it has to be their debut.

    05. How many albums by #13 do you own?
    Sweetbox - I own seven albums by them.

    06. What is your favorite song by #50 ?
    Snow Patrol - Chasing Cars

    07. Is there a song by #4 that makes you sad?
    Josh Groban - To Where You Are

    08. What is your least favorite song by #15 ?
    Hayley Westenra - Hine E Hine. It is so annoying.


    09. What is your favorite song by #5 ?
    Jean-Yves Thibaudet - Your Hands Are Cold

    10. Is there a song by #6 that makes you happy?
    Andrew Lloyd Webber - Any song from Starlight Express

    11. What is your favorite album by #40 ?
    Leona Lewis - She hasn't released one yet - only a single and an EP.

    12. What is your favorite song by #10 ?
    Lesiem - Roma

    13. What is a good memory you have involving #33 ?
    Vertical Horizon - My best friend playing along the drums with their songs.

    14. What is your favourite song by #37 ?
    I don't have have a 37 - they ar eboth 38. But we will say Evanescence - Probably 'Before the Dawn'.

    15. Is there a song by #19 that makes you happy?
    Hans Zimmer - Now We are Free, or Homeland.

    16. How many times have you seen #24 live?
    I don't have a 24 again. :) but I havent seen 23 or 25 live anyway.

    17. What is the first song you heard by #23 ?
    Enya[/aritst] and Fleetwood Mac - I grew up with both of the artists - too young to remember.

    18. What is your favorite album by #11 ?
    Era - Era 2


    19. Who is your favorite member of #1 ?
    Emilie Autumn - She's a solo artist.

    20. How many times have you seen #14 live?
    Nobuo Uematsu - Never.

    21. What is a good memory you have involving #45 ?
    Nicholas Hooper - He only entered my chart a few days ago - watching Harry Potter I suppose as he was the composer for the latest film!

    22. What is your favorite song by #16 ?
    Gregorian - The Gift.

    23. What is the first song you heard by #47 ?
    Craig Armstrong - Love Actually Soundtrack.

    24. What is your favorite album by #3 ?
    Keedie - Would I know

    25. What is your favourite song by #18 ?
    Ennio Morricone - Gabriel's Oboe

    26. What is the first song you heard by #38 ?
    Christina Aguilera - Genie In A Bottle, I guess!

    27. What is your favourite lyric that #21 has sung?
    Nightwish - All the lyrics to 'Sleeping Sun'.

    28. What is your favourite song by #2?
    Sarah Brightman - No One Like You, but I have over 300 tracks by her, so it really depends what mood I'm in.

    29. What is the first song you heard by #32 ?
    John Williams - It was probably the Star Wars theme growing up.

    30. What is your favorite song by #8 ?
    Emma Shapplin - Spesso, Sprofondo

    31. How many times have you seen #17 live?
    Patrick Doyle - Never.

    32. Is there a song by #44 that makes you happy?
    LeAnn Rimes - Not really. Her songs are normally depressing.

    33. What is your favorite album by #12 ?
    Within Temptation] - The Slient Force.

    34. What is the worst song by #29?
    Russell Watson - I couldn't choose, he has done a lot of bad ones.

    35. What was the first song you heard by #34 ?
    All Angels - Songbird

    36. What is your favorite album by #42 ?
    Filippa Giordano - only have one of hers.

    37. How many times have you seen #39 live?
    Michael Ball - I almost saw him once, but he wasn't cast in time.

    38. What is your favorite album by #36?
    Evanescence - All of their albums suck apart from 'Origin'.

    39. What is the first song you heard by #28 ?
    Katherine Jenkins - Questo E Te

    40. What is your favourite album by #7 ?
    Cantamus - Both of them, couldn't choose
  • Emilie Autumn Album Reviews.

    1 Ago 2007, 17:28

    I wrote these reviews for Amazon.co.uk, and thought I might as well put them on here. :)

    I have reviewed three albums by Emilie Autumn here.

    Liar/Dead Is The New Alive (Double Feature EP)
    Score: 3/5


    This was the last CD I purchased from Emilie Autumn as the two songs were not the most special ones from the album 'Opheliac'. Due to the extra tracks, though, I gave it a go, expecting the same quality that came with the second disc of 'Opheliac'. This is probably her weakest release. Remixes are never great at the best of times. Whilst some of the remixes create a different atmosphere, I sincerely doubt anyone preferring them to the originals.

    There are four original tracks not found on other albums - they are not of the quality you found on the second disc of 'Opheliac'. 'Mad Girl' is quite nice, and probably the best track on the album, it has a similar tempo to 'Thank God I'm Pretty' and the same kind of style, though 'Mad Girl' is less tongue in cheek. 'Best Safety Lies In Fear' is like a part two of '306'. It's mostly a jumping record of somebody saying 'If he says he loves you' and 'Best safety lies in fear' with a brooding background. 'In The Lake' and 'Let It Die' are live recordings and the production isn't great. They are of low quality in general, the first is repetitive to the point of irritation about a girl that has been buried behind someone's else in a lake. Typical Emilie topic, but not typical production wizardry, it being down to just her voice and one instrument (either acoustic guitar or Mandolin). 'Let It Die' sounds a lot like the other live performance.

    Also on this disc is a preview to Emilie's latest album (which is out now) - an electric violin instrumental called 'Unlaced' which used to be a primary reason to get this EP, but now that the other album is being released this EP may not be worth it. Do you remember 'Thank God I'm Pretty' from disc two of 'Opheliac'? She has put a cover version of it on here from an artist called 'Spiritual Front'. If that means something to you, great, if not, it sounds like the song is being sung by Leonard Cohen. The version is quite interesting, but lacks the humour and irony that Emilie provided. Plus, it's a bit strange for a man to sing such a song clearly written from a woman's perspective (do men smack other men's arses?).

    Bearing in mind, this EP is full of forgettable remixes and only four tracks you will find nowhere else, it is questionable if you should invest your money in this (which are quite weak). There is not much to take from this album but to complete a fans collection. I think this EP is more for the die-hard fans. Try to hear some previews before committing to this.

    Laced/Unlaced
    Score: 5/5


    I have a deluxe edition where the two CDs come in a hardcover book, and there is plenty of artwork and sheet music for the piece 'Unlaced'. Looking at this one, however, this seems to be a simple jewel case. There are only 2000 copies of the version I describe, so whether you want that one, or you want to take a chance on this one (I have no idea what the booklet looks like in this case) then go ahead and buy this version.

    If you know Emilie through Opheliac, or the Liar/The Dead Is The New Alive EP, I should tell you now, that this album is not like that. This album is purely violin and production wizardry you would come to expect from Emilie Autumn. That is not to say that this album is completely different, as the second disc sounds like a complicated instrumental version of the Opheliac album. If you enjoyed Emilie's 'Dominant' from Opheliac and 'Unlaced' from the EP, there is no reason why you won't like this.

    About the album though. Generous as always, there are twenty-two tracks on this album. They come in two discs. The first disc is simply a re-release of the extremely rare first album of hers 'On A Day...' only, it has five unnamed live bonus tracks. This first disc is purely classical, based around her violin, most of which are compositions by well known composers such as Bach. Three of the tracks are her own compositions which sound very much like they go hand in hand with the other timeless classics on the album. These tracks were recorded when she was merely seventeen years old and showcases what a young talent she was. Personally, I prefer this first disc to the second, she throws her own arrangement and interpretation on to the pieces. Whilst she plays the baroque violin with charm and style, she is backed up with her distinctive other sounds of the lute, harpsichord and the baroque cello - just to make sure you get the full Emilie Autumn experience. She is distinctive, even with pieces that have been played by so many others.

    The first disc was recorded in 1997. So ten years on, what does the new disc, recorded in 2007 have to offer that is different from her first? Out with the old, in with the new. Emilie abandons the baroque violin in exchange for the electric violin. This time round, everything you hear on this disc is down to Emilie, she plays all of the instruments (including that distinctive harpsichord she is so well known for) and produced the whole thing on her own. I may be bold in saying, this is a disc that you have heard nothing like before. Genius in composition (she wrote all the tracks on this disc) and flawless in their execution, Emilie delivers a sound to excite the mind. It opens with 'Unlaced' which was a sampler for this album on her last EP which is dark, brooding and atmospheric. The albums continues in the same vain, there are no weepy violin solos here. All packed with energy, some dark, and some just plain bouncy such as 'A Cure?' 'Face The Wall' is probably the most fascinating piece on here as it is solo electric violin and is the demonstration of Emilie's refreshing technique with the violin.

    Both discs take some listening in order to appreciate the talent on display here. Some tracks may immediately jump out, whilst some are subtle. There is not one bad track on here. I'd highly recommend it to 'Opheliac' fans even if the fact there are no vocals puts you off - the style of the second disc is very much the same. If you love the violin, then there should be nothing stopping you here, as this is a new fascinating way for it to be heard. There is nobody quite like Emilie Autumn. I own a lot of violinist albums and no one comes anywhere near Emilie - not even Vanessa-Mae.

    Opheliac
    Score: 5/5


    I found Emilie through Last.FM and the first album I bought was her classical/electronic violin album 'Laced-Unlaced.' After listening to her original compositions, and her own renditions of classics such as 'Largo' it was obvious she was a very well accomplished classical musician. So what did I expect of 'Opheliac'? Not this, that's for sure!

    It turns out that this album is pretty dark, and has elements of... well, I don't know what of! All I know that this album is one hell of a ride. Gone are her violin instrumentals, in with her vocals which range from beautiful, to bizarre, to down right terrible. Terrible in a good way. It appears that she doesn't care much if she sounds good or not, rather, she just wants to get her point across. I should try to describe the sound to you. There is classical violin, acoustic violin, and electric violin, mixed in with heavy beats and electronic mixing. Any authentic sound is probably some form of a string instrument. She hasn't the best singing voice in the world, but it's hardly the point here, she can still sing okay, and she mostly sings straight, but she has some unique vocal techniques and interpretations too. Worth checking out. It's a dark but catchy album. I'm not gothic, or listen to gothic music (the odd WT or Nightwish, but nothing serious) and I'd normally run a mile from anything like this, but it works.

    This album seems loosely based around the Victorian era and literature. Considering the connotations of the Victorian Era you get gothic like literature, murder of prostitutes, repressed women, darkness, industrialisation, etc. It's all here. How she conveys all in a sound I will never know, but as a Victorian Literature student, I think she pulls it all off amazingly well.

    There are two discs. The first disc is consistently dark. It's about madness, suicide, murder, rape, anger, alienation, death, stalking and the like. The one exception to this is the light-hearted 'Swallow' where you'll be forgiven if you initially mistake it as an early 90's Madonna record. It's very oddly placed on this album, but you won't regret it being on here. 'The Art of Suicide' is another one. It's not that happy, but the music is a contrast to the lyrical content. I understand people may criticise her lyrics, and since they are about such extreme things, it's a little wonder, but I DO wonder if those people understand the point of what she was trying to do, or how much they know about the Victorian period. There wasn't a lot of happiness for the Victorians, especially when translated into history. I think the lyrics are fantastic. Some people may recognise the story (and title) of 'Shalott' which is a direct rip off of Alfred Lord Tennyson's poem 'The Lady of Shalott'. Considering it's my favourite poem of all time, I was wonderfully surprised to hear it, and her lyrical adaptation is altered very well to fit in nicely with the rest of the album.

    The highlights of the first disc are definitely 'Opheliac' (Ophelia was a character in Shakespeare's 'Hamlet' and I think it basically means madness in this songs context), 'Swallow', 'Liar', 'I Want My Innocence Back', 'Misery Loves Company' and 'Let The Record Show'. For 'Opheliac', you will hear a song quite unlike you have ever heard before. It's repulsive yet appealing at the same time. She growls in the chorus, and I usually hate growls but it really works for that song. 'I Want My Innocence Back' is nothing short of terrifying, do not listen to alone in the dark. 'Let The Record Show' is sung from a point of view of a murdered prostitute. Although the content is dark, it's mega catchy. Her vocals on the verse is genius. The chorus is proper jumping if you have it up loud. Again, you wouldn't have heard anything like it.

    Now for the second disc. There's not a lot here (three songs, two violin, three spoken poems). Put aside 'Largo' and the three poems, which are all okay, I suppose, but not a great listening experience, you have the genius of 'Dominant', '306', 'Thank God I'm Pretty' and the hilarious 'Marry Me'. 'Dominant' is easily the best track on this disc. It's an instrumental with the violin and electronic mixing, it sounds like it should be part of a dramatic film score. '306' carries on from where 'Dominant' left off, it's not as good though'. The next two songs are comical. 'Thank God I'm Pretty' is Emilie's sarcastic gratitude for being pretty, it's not laugh out loud, but will make you smirk. 'Marry Me' is absolutely brilliant. Not only does she sing really well in it, it's also hilarious, and is based on Victorian upper class marriage. I suggest you find the lyrics and read along with the song, as there are very funny moments it. It's light hearted as well and her vocals verge on operatic during the chorus.

    The last thing I should mention about Emilie is that she does albums practically by herself. She doesn't have a team of songwriters, musicians, mixers and a production team she does it all herself. She writes, performs and produces everything. She is immensely talented, I hope she doesn't stay in the shadow of obscurity for too much longer even though I understand why she does. I doubt an album like this could ever be widely accepted by a mass audience.

    If you want to hear something different, you must buy this album, and do so with an open mind.
  • Emilie Autumn Gig Review

    21 Jul 2007, 19:02

    Fri 20 Jul – Emilie Autumn, Lahannya


    Answer me this. If you arrive early at a signing, and waited until the time came when the artist was supposed to turn up, but then doesn't, and arrives one hour and thirty minutes later after they were supposed to have arrived, and then waited furthermore for the queue to go down, and then got right to the door and then be told that the line has to stop there, what mood would you be in for the gig about to take place with the same artist? I stood, and made my less than enthusiastic friend who had never heard of Emilie Autumn previously, stand with me in that line for two hours, quite motionless, breathing carbon monoxide from the chain smokers in front. We tried to entertain ourselves. Theorise what was to happen in the final Harry Potter book we would be both obtaining at midnight. We played games on our phones. But mostly, we just stood there. Some brief sparks of conversation drifted between the two of us every now and again. At the beginning, it was fine, but the conversation soon turned to 'This is getting silly, now', and so on.

    And so it did get extremely silly. Doors opened for her gig at 7pm. She was supposed to be signing CDs between 5-6pm at another venue. But it wasn't until 6.30pm that she drifted by without an apology, without one glance at her fans queuing who had been waiting hours, and from me and backwards - in vain, and that was a lot of people. She did not offer an apology for her lack of puncuality at the concert either. Not one word of gratitude to the people whos feet and backs ached, and then were to go to her gig, and stand on their feet for another four hours.

    Aching, and in pain all over my body, I arrived at the Underworld, whilst an amatuer band set themselves up. No drummer, two guitarists, a vocalist, and a redundant girl doing the odd vocalise in the background. They started, and I was not sure how I was going to get through it, being sore from head to toe. The only thought from stopping me going was that I had got that far, now that it was so close, why throw it away? Lahannya came on stage, and for a brief time, I felt better, but her music soon washed over me, especially as I could barely hear her vocals due to illness. Could the day get any worse, knowing constantly that my friend who had come with me as a favour, and had no likeness towards what we watching at all was in double my pain? Worse still, the tallest man with the tallest widest girl in the place decided to have themselves right at the front. Fair enough, each to ones own, but it did nothing to lighten my mood as my view was consistently blocked.

    Eventually, finally, Emilie's music started playing, and some weird girls that would irritate me throughout the rest of the gig (and yet, would have been wrong if they were not there) came on the stage very slowly. Emilie came on in full costume, looking absolutely amazing, full of energy and aggressive conviction, armed with irony, wit and humour she is so well known for in her music. The aches in my bones disappeared, I forgot the fact that I wanted to smash her face in earlier for being so disorganised and letting down her fans so badly. As disappointing as it was that music of the music was back track, it did not fail to bring the atmosphere into the room that we know so well from our own bedrooms or iPods. I relished everything on the stage, though I couldn't see most of it, near the front as I was. I appreciated the costumes, the unique theatrical performance of Emilie and the girls, not missing any point they were making. I have been to many concerts in my time, but as much as the bad mood I was in, I had never enjoyed a concert more. Sure, I felt my body may give way at any moment but the infectious enthusiasm of the audience couldn't be ignored, and loved the likes of 'Opheliac', 'Liar' and 'Dead Is The New Alive' were extra special due to audience participation (I particularly liked how every came in early on 'Give in, give in, give in...' and she said 'wait for it my kiddies'). She banter in between songs was amusing, and all the while you got to marvel at the costumes. It wasn't a million pound set, yet it was a visual feast for the eyes

    The most enjoyable performances are definitely 'Unlaced' and what seemed to be an edited and extended 'Face the Wall'. Being drawn to Emilie in the first place due to her violin skills I was looking forward to it. She played skillfully, and didn't go over the top like most violin players.

    After the show was dreadful. Just one small place for merchandise, and getting through people at the speed that a tortoise would be proud of. I wanted to see what was there, and buy something, perhaps, but due to lack of organisation it was deemed next to impossible unless I wanted to stand on my feet for another unnecessary two hours.

    So despite the rough mood I was in, I managed, somehow, possibly through the Emilie's charms and stage appeal, to enjoy the damn show. I thank her for the show. But there wasn't an apology in sight regarding the signings, and so I find it next to impossible to forgive her for the stunt. Love the music - disillusioned now of the person. I advice anyone to catch her if she is close by, but never ever bother with signings, as she is unreliable.

    If the signing disastor never happened, it would have got 10/10, but if include it, I would slash that rating in half.
  • Don't Judge A Book By Its Cover (Emilie Autumn)

    3 May 2007, 18:04

    I discovered Emilie Autumn mere weeks ago. As usual, due to my dial up connection, I was unable to hear clips, so I illegally downloaded her top three tracks at the time to get a taste of what she was about: Opheliac, Misery Loves Company and the The Art of Suicide. I listened to 'Opheliac' first and the one minute introduction put me off. Then she started the vocals, which put me off. The chorus came, and she shouted. As somebody who listens to the voice I really shouldn't have liked the song - but despite everything about it technically putting me off, I was allured into it. I listened to it over and over again hardly knowing why. It was a bizarre experience. I then listened to 'Misery Loves Company' and again, I didn't like her vocals apart from the chorus where she showed some melody.

    By this time I was reading Emilie Autumn's shoutbox where everyone raved about her extraordinary talent. I didn't get it. It took all of my restraint to ask 'Does she shout and talk in songs to hide the fact she can't sing?' Due to my general rule of thumb that I shouldn't put down artists in their shoutboxes where their fans clearly go, I said nothing. Good thing I didn't say such a thing, because I knew nothing about her, and I would have looked terribly ignorant and stupid if I did say it.

    Despite what I perceived to be bad vocals, I thought Emilie Autumn was very interesting, and above all, different - which is the number one thing I look for in an artist. I bought an album that everyone was talking about in the shoutbox Laced/Unlaced. I didn't know what to expect. When it arrived, I found two CDs in a beautiful boxset, and saw her look for the first time. I don't like the whole gothic thing, and was a bit irritated that she had all this smack on - I couldn't see what she really looked like. Nevermind. I tossed it aside and played the CDs. I was in for a shock. The album was completely different to the three tracks I initially heard. First disc was classical violin, the second disc was electric violin. I was immensely happy with the album, and congratulated myself on taking such a chance.

    Now others in the shoutbox were mentioning Enchant which was completely different to the other albums. I couldn't find the CD everywhere and it's apparently out of print. I was forced to buy from download (the first album I have ever bought using digital download - I always buy CDs). I was again, in for another shock when I heard this album. Each track on Enchant seemed to belong to a different genre. New-age, pop, jazz, rock... I loved it. On this album, she sang normally. Nothing like 'Opheliac'. She used it softly and as it turns out, she has a lovely voice.

    I was so interested by this time that I looked into her, and I started to appreciate why people were raving on about her talent. As it turns out, she released her own albums by a record company she set up herself just to fit that purpose. She writes all of her songs, performs all of the instruments, produces all of her songs - in short, what you hear on her albums is something she did completely by herself. Artists these days rely on a whole team to make their albums. Not Emilie Autumn. Her story from a classical artist into a genre SHE INVENTED HERSELF only impressed me all the more. Now everytime I see her style, hear the vocals on Opheliac, I love it. This is an artist who is true to her art, who can make music that she wants to make, who doesn't pigeonhole the market to maximise sales. She is generous with her material, offering anything she has ever performed in her cds, and even pulled back an album for a few weeks at the last minute, because she found five more recordings she wanted to treat her fans with.

    I now have Opheliac (the album) on order and some of her EPs. I'll buy anything she releases. I trust her to make the effort, and I trust that I'll like whatever she comes out with. There is nothing more great than an artist to dabbles in different genres, experimenting with different sounds and music. I've never come across such a diverse artist since Sarah Brightman and I think Emilie Autumn even surpasses her.

    The moral of the story is, check out an artist properly before you judge them, especially diverse ones. The amount of people that diss Sarah Brightman because they have heard one or two albums of hers is ridiculous when she has twenty albums and has a thirty year long story of her time in the music business. I'm so glad I looked into Emilie properly, because I think she is now one of my favourite artists, and just in time for her do a date in London.

    I can't stop listening to Emilie Autumn at the moment. I think she is the only one I have listened to all week! I get the need to put her on if I haven't listened to her for too long.
  • Who I have seen live, and how I rate them.

    2 Abr 2007, 17:11

    Boyzone:
    How many times?: Twice
    Rating: N/A
    Comments: I can't remember their performance. I was only eleven. And I was at the back.

    Hayley Westenra
    How many times?: 5
    Rating: 10/10
    Comments: Boring and sedated on CD, magical live.

    Sarah Brightman
    How many times?: 2
    Rating: 10/10
    Comments: Her concerts are always creative and exciting (swings, flying above the audience etc), and she hits everything vocally, and doing so very powerfully. The ultimate live experience.

    Keedie
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 10/10
    Comments: Amazing vocal power and range.

    G4
    How many times?: 2
    Rating: 7/10
    Comments: They can sing, but the teen boppy crowd that they brought with them to the events I attended brought them down.

    Katherine Jenkins
    How many times?: Twice
    Rating: 5/10
    Comments: Weaknesses in her vocal ability becomes very clear when hearing her live. Breath control is disasterous. Needs to take breath mid-notes. Kudos for waiting around to sign autographs though. Genuinely nice person.

    OperaBabes
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 6/10
    Comments: A... bizarre experience. The costumes were horrible and they stage mannerisms worse so, but their vocals were fine.

    Cantamus
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 10/10
    Comments: Excellent through and through. Top choir. My highlight of the evening in question.

    Amy Nuttall
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 7/10
    Comments: Quite good actually. Not particularly special, but it certainly was good.

    Becky Jane Taylor
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 9/10
    Comments: Very good. Loved her. And she signed my programme afterwards. :)

    Aled Jones
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 6/10
    Comments: He was the host of the show, but he sung. He made an entertaining presenter, but a bland performer.

    The Choirboys
    How many times?: 2
    Rating: 7/10
    Comments: Yea. Nice voices. A bit on the boring side. And one of the boys kept staring at me through out. I was very scared. Thought he was the demon child or something.

    Cortes
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 10/10
    Comments: Tingles down my spine. Performed the excellent Nessun Dorma.

    Julian Lloyd Webber
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 2/10
    Comments: He gets 2 out of ten because a) he probably played the cello quite well, but b) mostly because my Dad and I had a lot of fun mocking him afterwards. He was very, very VERY boring.

    Alex Prior
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 10/10
    Comments: I was shocked. Absolute show stopper.

    Amici Forever
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 6/10
    Comments: Meh. Didn't really have an affect on me. Not that it matters, probably changed their line up three times since I saw them last.

    Emma Johnson
    How many times?: 2
    Rating: 2/10
    Comments: I was cringing the whole way through. Oh, she played it well, it was just teh way she bounced raround as if she was dancing at a night club. That, and it was boring.

    Harry Harris
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 10/10
    Comments: Really entertaining piano player. One of the highlights of the show in question. Fantastic.

    Joseph McManners
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 0/10
    Comments: I know he's just a kid, but he sounds like a cat drenched in oil and then set alight. So out of tune.

    Nicky Spence
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 7/10
    Comments: Nice guy, alright performance. Entertaining.

    Nicola Benadetti
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 10/10
    Comments: I was hypnotised. Brilliant performer.

    Myleene Klass
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 5/10
    Comments: Well, she came on after Harry Harris, who was a pro on the piano, and then she played with her 'two fingers at a time' technique. She was laughable in comparison. Nice girl though.

    Beverly Knight
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 8/10
    Comments: Great voice.

    Tony Christie
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 3/10
    Comments: I wanted to be somewhere else.

    Jocelyn Brown
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 7/10
    Comments: She was definitely entertaining.

    Marti Pellow
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 4/10
    Comments: I'm the only person in the world to think he's actually a shit singer?

    Natasha Hamilton
    How many times?: 1
    Rating: 4/10
    Comments: Good singer. I mean it. But she's boring. No stage presence at all.

    Who I'm going to see:
    Within Temptation
    Josh Groban

    Will update this when the time comes. :)