CD Review

Imogen Heap's Speak For Yourself worthy CD


Rachel Bott

by Rachel Bott

I've come to find in my experiences that the best things in life are truly random. When I'm not expecting or looking for something, I'm suddenly faced with something that is 42 times greater than my imagination could possibly conjure.

For example, in all of my 22 years, I never imagined I would be a fan of Fox's TV drama The O.C. In fact, I feel silly admitting it now. But sometimes it's those little things that surprise us about ourselves that lead to valuable, unregrettable things.

If I had never watched and eventually gotten hooked on this particular show, I might never have heard Imogen Heap's songs used in the show's actually impressive soundtrack. Seeking out the choice to buy her album was one of the best choices I've ever made. Heap, a nearly-30 native of Essex, England, has found herself successful in solo and teamwork.

Speak for Yourself, her third album (second solo attempt), was released at the close of 2005 in the U.S. Although you can chart and recognize Heap's similarities with influences from artists such as Bjork, Fiona Apple, Kate Bush and Annie Lennox, she is eclectic beyond the definition.

Her effortlessly deep vocal style that shares the genuine ability to peak at high octaves is quite noteworthy. Heap brings you to your own concept of paradise, and along the way shows you through her extraordinary lyrical expression how beautiful and messed up the world can really be.

The best example of her incredible talent is proved most decidedly in tracks "Hide and Seek" and "Loose Ends." Her capacity to create untrespassed, foreign imagery mirrors only that of perhaps The Velvet Underground.

Something I really appreciate is how varied and spontaneous yet concrete her songs are. In "Hide and Seek" I first hear a song that could be easily and fittingly played out at a funeral: precise, delicate, passionate, intense, honest. But as I read along the words, I realize the meaning is quite unrelated. She's singing aloud her observations toward a person who is doing a common activity-unfairingly taking control and making solo decisions on things that affect others.

She writes, "What'd ya say? That it's all for the best-of course it is. That it's just what we need, and you decided this? Ransom notes keep falling out your mouth, mid speak newspaper word cutouts...I don't beleive you, you don't care a bit."

Heap is truly one of those individuals who refuses to let any obstacle get in the way of sharing with the world her wit, self-integrity and creative control.

Anyone who cares enough to literally run out now and buy her album is doing themself a huge favor.

Why deny yourself the privilege?

Rachel Bott, a music enthusiast, is employed as a para-professional at Outlook Elementary School.


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