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Regina Spektor - Begin To Hope

Regina Spektor, Begin To Hope

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 3.5 out of 5

RUSSIAN born, New York-based singer songwriter Regina Spektor boasts an easygoing, quirky style that places her on the cusp of several genres without really fitting into any.

Thought predominantly piano-based (having been a product of the NY cafe scene), the tracks on her latest album, Begin To Hope flirt with comparisons to everyone from Norah Jones and Katie Melua to Jem and Bjork.

It’s an extremely engaging listen that wraps Spektor’s supremely enchanting vocals around some warm, lush melodies that truly delight.

What’s more, it delivers a set of songs that are both quirkily worded and refreshingly honest in their depiction of life.

Former single, On The Radio is typical of what to expect – a wonderfully offbeat concoction of PSAPP-style beats and playful lyrics that include such choice lines as “this is how it works, it feels a little worse than when we drove our hearse right through that screaming crowd” and “on the radio you’ll hear November Rain, that solo’s awful long but it’s a nice refrain”.

Opening track, Fidelity is another gem, a supremely lively introduction that drops a beautiful set of vocals around some enchanting beats and aching vocals about the nature of love.

While Better is a breezy blend of tingling piano chords and soft-rock electric guitar riffs that are elevated by Spektor’s bouncing vocals.

Samson, meanwhile, is a tender moment that recalls Spektor’s earlier, strictly piano-based work – heartfelt and lovely at the same time.

Occasionally, the album drifts into meandering, piano-heavy tracks that recall the more pensive style of Norah Jones and co (such as Field Below and Apres Moi).

But there’s always another upbeat effort waiting in the wings to keep the mood light and lively. Hotel Song and That Time (which sounds like Bjork jamming with The Strokes) are two more examples of Spektor at her best.

The overall impression, therefore, is that Spektor’s latest effort provides evidence of an extremely talented artist blossoming in all her quirky prime.

Track listing:

  1. Fidelity Listen
  2. Better Listen
  3. Samson Listen
  4. On The Radio Listen
  5. Field Below Listen
  6. Hotel Song Listen
  7. Apres Moi Listen
  8. 20 Years Of Snow Listen
  9. That Time Listen
  10. Edit Listen
  11. Lady Listen
  12. Summer In The City