Monday, October 22, 2012

Van Giersbergen, Anneke - "Everything is Changing"

Van Giersbergen, Anneke - Everything is Changing
2011, Aqua Recordings

1. Feel Alive
2. You Want to be Free
3. Everything is Changing
4. Take Me Home
5. I Wake Up
6. Circles
7. My Boy
8. Stay
9. Hope, Pray, Dance, Play
10. Slow Me Down
11. Too Late
12. 1000 Miles Away From You

I became aware of Anneke Van Giersbergen by being a rabid fan of both Ayreon and Devin Townsend. She's done guest vocals for both groups and I've always loved the parts she's sung. I was dimly aware of her other bands but when I heard about her solo "pop" album I thought it was time to check her out. Everything is Changing is what author John Scalzi might call a "B+" album. It's not super amazing or groundbreaking, but it's a good, fun album. At the end of everything you're glad to have listened to it. I'm still on the fence as to whether her voice is truly made for center stage or if she's better as an accent in other people's stuff. There are times (especially in the ballad "Circles") when she sounds a bit shrill. Luckily there are plenty of great tunes to balance it out. The lyrics have a sort of English-as-a-second-language feel, but English is Anneke's second language (or third or forth, you never know with Europeans). I think it just adds to the charm. She's known for singing a bit heavier, darker stuff but everything here is pretty sugary pop-rock. Not that that's a bad thing. A time and place for everything and all that. Definitely glad I picked this one up.

Useless Fact: Two videos were made for this album. One for "Feel Alive" and one for "Take Me Home." "Take Me Home" is the better one as things actually happen in that video.

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