ALBUM REVIEW // WOMAN’S HOUR ‘CONVERSATIONS’

Originally published at: http://slatethedisco.com/2014/08/album-review-womans-hour-conversations/

The brain child of siblings Fiona and William Burgess; Woman’s Hour, have been referred to as ‘the perfect indie guitar group’. Add a bassist and some keyboards and you’ve got yourself a recipe for just that: the perfect indie band. Previously The Guardian, NME and The Telegraph have all nodded in their approval, so does the new album live up to the standards that have been bestowed upon this Kendal based group?

Well, it’s an interesting album, definitely. It mixes a slight 80’s-vibe electro underpinned with staccato guitars and soft melodies, with just a touch of indie pop.

What intrigues me most is Fiona’s voice. Much in the same vein as Florence Welch, Hannah Reid and Romy Madley Croft, her featherlight vocals are an echoey shimmer of light in the darkness. So soft, so gentle, so innocent. It sucks you into an ethereal dimension, conjuring up visions of space and stars. Her lyrics are also complex, a contrast to the simple melodies and layered synths that play behind her.

There are some charming moments, such as ‘In Stillness We Remain’ there’s a catchy 70’s funk groove and the ‘Rumours’ inspired title track ‘Conversations’, but the majority of the songs are slow and simple. There is little to no drums on most of the tracks, which is a bold move. It is mostly made up for with the excellent bassist; who manages to make something magical out of nothing – plucking notes from thin air. But it’ still Fiona’s vocals that really are fantastic and though it may be slow and deceptively simple, it’s a beautifully crafted album nonetheless.

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