Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Under the Surface
Genres: Alternative Rock, World Music, Pop, Rock
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A hidden masterpiece
Patrick Vincent Lau | Singapore | 01/05/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you're tired of the droning and bland sounds from the radio, then you've probably come to the right place.
The former blonde half of the Norweigen pop sensation M2M, Marit larsen has come a long way to produce a work that's nothing short of a masterpiece in the folk-pop genre (although that can barely describe the diversity and originality of the album).
Although revolving around the usual themes of relationships, romance, love, and love lost, she approaches it with honest lyrics and with the band, quirky and melodic instrumentals, making the common sound so refreshingly new.
As some have mentioned, I rarely find myself skipping through songs as the album works so well in its entirety, with each track naturally progressing to the next.
However, I can say that this album is not for everyone. It has a very predominant folk direction, with the pop elements playing a supporting role. This can probably explain why 'Don't Save Me' and 'Under The Surface' are the radio hits in Norway, them being the more conventional pop-rock/ballad arrangements in the album (the other in my opinion being 'Solid Ground').
Marit's sound is very organic, having very little synthesized sounds or use of anything electronic (other than a little use of vocal effects for some of the tracks, notably 'Poison Passion'). But what really gives the album such a different dimension is the liberal use of various bluegrass instruments such as the; banjo, mandolin, harmonica and many other acoustic-based instruments.
So if you're one who finds it hard to appreciate the not so conventional, I would give the album a skip, although you may still enjoy 'Under The Surface', 'Solid Ground' and 'Don't Save Me'. But for those wanting to try something new and refershing, and missed hearing music that is simple and honest, you won't go wrong with Under The Surface.
'This Time Tomorrow' (Really love the instrumentals in this track, fun and edgy, although the lyrics are about a girl and her rather paranoid behavoiur towards her boyfriend. Somehow the contrast works really well.)
'The Sinking Game' (Second best example next to 'Only a Fool' that exemplifies the unique folk aspect of the album. Great instrumentals on this one too, a nice fusion of jazz, folk and pop.)
'Come Closer' (With that distinctive Banjo riff in the beginning to the wonderfully arranged chorus, this track brings you along a rollercoaster ride of emotions through the arrangment. Also one of Marit's stronger vocal performances in the album. A great union of folk and pop-rock elements.)
5 stars for Marit! 0 stars for DRM!
R. Hiranaka | 08/26/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This CD never fails to make me smile. I remember at a younger age listening to Marit in M2M, and I was distressed upon hearing that they broke up. This CD reminds me what I love about their music.
While many people seem to think that Marion has more vocal talent, I happen to like the rather ethereal quality of Marit's voice. It lends quite a bit of strength to her rather folksy and catchy little tunes on her album. The songs are the type of songs that you find yourself humming along to long after you've finished listening. Even better is the fact that you're never annoyed that it's stuck in your head!
However if I were to have one quibble with this CD it would be the fact that I can't put it on my MP3 player. It's heavily copy protected, and you'll have to download a special player to play it on your computer. It works just fine in a regular CD player but has issues with my Honda's CD player. It's not an authentic CD... rather it's just a bunch of data. So I can't see putting it on an MP3 player anytime soon... which makes me sad."