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YEAR… July 15 2016
Emma Louise’s voice is great by itself, even better multi-tracked, and exponentially superior backed by synths, beats, watery trickles and field recordings.
Supercry opens with All We Ask Is Time (Amen, sister) then Talk Baby Talk showcases Louise’s dangerous, unnerving timbre and subject matter, augmented with a Gesaffelstein vs. Arca vs. Alt-J soundbed.
Piano, barely-there drum ticks, church bells and tiptoe backing vocals (done by Louise of course) drag Undertow along, “I put my white flag in the wind to let love know I’m giving in”.
Everything Will Be Fine seems to come from a satellite, the chorus whizzes into orbit atop a creamy pavlova synth, layered and puffy and satisfying, a sugary rush you don’t come down from.
Colours could do with taking a step back from itself. Ironically, the line “don’t paint me beige” comes off vanilla. Her literal Radiohead reference is better, it comes in rainbows.
Grace is an ode to a mate who has had Louise’s back from day dot of her career, she’s “actually an angel”.
No bangers jump out.
That’s fine. You can trust Louise to bang the drum when she plays Illuminate live, a tune that needs a push to get it over the line here. It floats like a cherry blossom and ends up trodden down on the footpath.
The 24-year-old gives blue-chip vocal performances on the whole record. Belgian producer Pascal Gabriel invited her to his studio in a medieval village in France and accordingly there’s a dual connection to nature and history from her tropical Cairns upbringing — songs of the land that nearly all land.
Her debut album vs. Head vs. Heart marked her as unfulfilled potential, grasping at a sound. Here, she’s closer than ever.
01 – All We Ask Is Time
02 – Talk Baby Talk
03 – Underflow
04 – West End Kids
05 – Everything Will Be Fine
06 – Illuminate
07 – Colours
08 – Shut the Door
09 – Nowhere
10 – Grace
11 – I Thought I Was a Ship