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Katie Melua talks about fourth album, The House

Katie Melua

Story by Jack Foley

KATIE Melua’s fourth album, The House marks the singer’s first collaboration with producer William Orbit, the man renowned for his work on Madonna’s Ray of Light LP.

Released on May 24, the album will be preceded by the single, The Flood, on May 17.

The Flood’s gentle insistence ebbs and flows before an unexpected tempo change kicks the song into a pulse-quickening, dance-pop-rhythm with a dramatic climax that leads to the record’s conclusion in the original tempo.

Written by Katie, Guy Chambers and Lauren Christy, The Flood is one of six Melua/Chambers collaborations that appear on The House

Commenting on the collaboration, Melua said: “I was in Los Angeles writing for a few days with Lauren. We worked on a piano melody that Guy had sent over and came up with the lyrics and topline for the first part of the song which, at that time, was a really nice ballad.”

Back in London, Katie and Guy wrote a number of songs together, including putting the final touches to The Flood.

Speaking about writing with Katie, Guy says: “Working with Katie has been a deeply rewarding experience as she approaches music with a natural curiosity that is very creative. The songs all tell a story and go to places that some artists would be afraid to go.”

For Katie, writing and recording the record has been a revelation.

“Being in the studio with Mike [Batt] over the last seven years has been incredible. I’ve been very lucky to have written and recorded with someone who has a wealth of experience and was able to give me such undivided attention.

“I’ve learned so much and, being on the road for the last three years, I’ve had time to digest what I’ve learned and to experiment with who I am as a writer. Everything seems to have clicked in to place.”

Indeed, The Flood was one of the songs Katie sent to William Orbit that enticed him out of his self-imposed retirement as a producer.

He commented: “I was captivated by Katie’s voice when I first heard her demos in October last year and, although not having been involved in record production for some time, felt that I just had to work with her.

“It turned out to be one of the most rewarding experiences of my life and a pleasure from start to finish. I have been hypnotised by the many colours and moods of her voice, and the deep emotional waters of her lyrics and melodies. She is one of the most complex and intriguing artists that I have ever worked with.”

In support of The Flood, Katie has announced an extensive European tour for autumn 2010 which will include 13 shows in Britain in December. She will also be playing at festivals and outdoor concerts this summer.

Find out about Katie’s UK and European tour dates