This site too slow? Try a mirror  --  Subscribe to the Guide  --  Find artist:
the Ectophiles' Guide: * Guide Home* What's new* * Alphabetical* Genre* Commentator* Location* Random artist* Search* Contact the editors* Credits

Heather Russell


Country of origin:

U.S.

Type of music generally:

Progressive-tinged traditional folk-pop? (neal)

Status:

Most recent release, Just In Time (EP, 1997)

See also:

Heather Russell info at Shaded Light Productions

Covers/own material:

Own material, plus a shakespearean sonnet.

General comments:

Lush arrangements and strong melodies with a hint of classical and Celtic touches. A visit to the Heather Russell's web page finds comparisons to two groups: bold experimenters like Kate Bush, Jane Siberry, Tori Amos and the lusher, prettier side of world music like Enya, Loreena McKennitt, and Clannad. Neither seemed particularly apt to me. The disc's strengths are definitely its lush arrangements and strong melodies with a hint of classical and Celtic touches, which I guess puts it closer to the Enya group. (neal)

My first impression was that she sounded a little like Victoria Williams—only because of the fast vibrato in Heather's voice, not that she sounds like a little girl (like Victoria does). (Riphug@aol.com)

Recommended first album:

Just In Time ep only available recording to date

Recordings:

Just In Time ep (1997)

Just In Time ep

Release info:

1997—self-released

Availability:

CD Baby

Ecto priority:

Modest

Comments:

The disc's strengths are definitely its lush arrangements and strong melodies. The production is slightly thin throughout, which is too bad because the arrangements of the songs are often quite strong. A wide variety of styles are represented in the 7 tracks (which include 2 re-mixes) and a lot of inspiration is taken from literature (lyrics from Shakespeare, and, according to the web-page, inspiration drawn from fairy tales and The Arabian Nights).
     "Just In Time" has the airiest vocals, but builds quite nicely. This is the only song with printed lyrics, and I didn't find it that rewarding to read them. However, I particularly liked the somewhat off-kilter phrasing and vocal layering on the song, and have found it repeatedly creeping into my mind.
     Next up is "When I Wish", whose arrangement put me in mind of English traditional music. I liked imagining Heather simultaneously playing keyboard and pennywhistle :) (Inspired by Hans Christian Anderson's "Thumbelina").
     "Mirror" (anime mix) veered into somewhat generic rock and roll territory. This was the only track that left me cold.
     "Morgiana" weighed in with a faint Celtic or British Isles feel. I love the lilt and sound of it, but no matter how many times I tried, I couldn't keep focused enough to work the story out. (Apparently inspired by Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves.)
     I'm particularly fond of the a cappella arrangement of Shakespeare's "Sonnet 29". The vocals swoop and twirl in fascinating ways, pulling the lyrics along with them.
     The 40-oz Crew remix of "Sonnet 29" follows, and it's a dramatic reworking of the song. Lots of familiar sounding techno-stylings here, but the sounds and rhythms are combined in intriguing ways, making this extended version of the song just as compelling as the original. The first version is simple and open while the re-mix piles all sorts of sounds and rhythms into the spaces.
     The 40-oz Crew remix of "Mirror" uses a lot of the same elements, replacing the straightforward rock approach I found tiresome. Once again, this is a pretty dramatic reworking, and it sounds like an entirely different song. A much better song (sonically), though at nearly 6 minutes, it was about 2 minutes longer than I was interested in.
     While somewhat uneven, I found a lot to reward repeated listenings, and a few outstanding tracks. (neal)


Thanks to Neal Copperman for work on this entry.

Why the ads?


Pop (Alternative)

361 - 400 of 508 entries

<<  10-Ay  Az-Br  Br-Co  Co-El  Em-Ha  Ha-Ka  Ka-Ma  Ma-Mu  My-Pe  Pe-Sh  Sh-Ta  Ta-Vo  Vo-Zu  >>

Click the bullet for speed (drop the menu) or the name for convenience (keep the menu)


>
Petracovich

>
An Pierlé

>
Pineforest Crunch

>
The Plague Monkeys

>
Poe

>
Pondus

>
Portishead

>
Potion

>
Pram

>
Psapp

>
Push3

>
Rat Wakes Red

>
Eddi Reader

>
Stephanie Rearick

>
R.E.M.

>
Happy Rhodes

>
JR Rhodes

>
Lou Rhodes

>
Lisa Richards

>
Eliza Rickman

>
Amy Rigby

>
Irina Rivkin

>
Kristilyn Robertson

>
Rökkurró

>
Patti Rothberg

>
Kari Rueslåtten

>
Emma Ruth Rundle

>
Heather Russell

>
Mary Lydia Ryan

>
Jayne Sachs

>
Sacred Raisin Cakes

>
Rachael Sage

>
Saint Etienne

>
Hope Sandoval & The Warm Inventions

>
Kelli Scarr

>
Soundtrack: The Hanging Garden

>
Cecil Seaskull

>
Seely

>
Shaï nO Shaï

>
The Shakers

<<  10-Ay  Az-Br  Br-Co  Co-El  Em-Ha  Ha-Ka  Ka-Ma  Ma-Mu  My-Pe  Pe-Sh  Sh-Ta  Ta-Vo  Vo-Zu  >>


Other Genres...
the Ectophiles' Guide: * Guide Home* What's new* * Alphabetical* Genre* Commentator* Location* Random artist* Search* Contact the editors* Credits

DISCLAIMER: Comments and reviews in the Ectophiles' Guide are excerpted from the ecto mailing list or volunteered by members of the list. They are the opinions of music enthusiasts, not professional music critics.

Entry last updated 2014-05-23 21:47:04.
Please request permission if you wish to
reproduce any of the comments in the
Ectophiles' Guide in any context.

The Ectophiles' Guide to Good Music is copyright © 1996-2004 by the editors.
Individual comments are copyright © by their authors.
Web site design and programming copyright © 1998-2004 usrbin design + programming.
All rights reserved.