posted on June 21, 2010 19:00
A review of the album 'As Day Follows Night' by Sarah Blasko
Review Snapshot: Aussie songstress Sarah Blasko's third album, but her first to be released in Europe. An album entirely worth repeated listens and will no doubt serve to make Blasko’s excursion northward a worthwhile one.
The Cluas Verdict? 7 out of 10
Full Review: The past year has been the reign of the female artist, between the Florences, the Marinas and the Marlings; in the realm of the alternative scene it has been a year where ‘the bands’ have been put on the back burner. Another addition to these ranks is Aussie songstress Sarah Blasko; with numerous ARIA awards under her belt, and after a recent deal this side of the world, Blasko’s been forced to start from scratch on her third album, her first to be released here. Blasko’s silky vocals ring similar to those of Norah Jones and the like, occasionally to her detriment, it is however Blasko’s off kilter sound that sets her apart from the pack, more reminiscent to that of Joanna Newsom and Fiona Apple.
‘As Day Follows Night’ is a new beginning in more ways than one, it being her first release since separating from her long time collaborator Robert Cranny and upping sticks to Sweden to record in isolation, perhaps allowing this to be a truer record to the artist than those previously release.
On this outing Blasko has ditched the electric guitars and keyboards for the most part for a simpler sound, allowing for an dreamlike production to the album, swirling synths and pounding drum beats filtering through every fibre of the record. This distinction is never more evident than in opener ‘Down on love’, fluttering piano and gentle cooing lulls as an introduction. ‘All I want’ is a beautifully breathy love song of sorts, not sure who she is or what she wants, Blasko explores the loneliness that ensues “No-one wants to be lonely, But what am I to do?”. Not simply content to convey this isolation lyrically the use of a musical saw is perhaps one of the greatest musical inclusions on the record, the saw proposes an environment devoid of all living beings, purposefully stranded.
‘Hold On My Heart’ recites of love left behind, endeavouring to hold herself back from ‘him’, “Can't please somebody else, Until you learn to look after yourself”, attempts at composure are repeated throughout “Hold on my heart, Find your stronger parts”, though it appears to be in vain. Not quite the paternal battle that one might expect from the title ‘Is My Baby Yours?’ tells of an unrequited love in a relationship “Should've known better, Fall in love, you still loved another”, the repetitive scolding suggesting itself in this statements quickened tempo serves as a future warning in matters of the heart.
Though moments of brilliance percolate throughout this record, there are times where it simply coasts; not quite lifting it to the heights that the artist, from past attempts, is quite clearly capable of. At times it could be seen as too accessible, especially by those who were fans of the previous two albums. In spite of all this it is an album entirely worth repeated listens and will no doubt serve to make Blasko’s excursion northward a worthwhile one.