Musical Retrospective of 2011 – Part 2 of 3

music2011-25. Caro Emerald – “The Other Woman”

Speaking of women humming sensually, have you ever heard Caro Emerald? When she hums her little “mhm” just before the second bridge of “Back It Up”, I always get shivers. This Spanish looking beauty is actually Dutch and she sings a longue jazz that makes me feel like I time travelled to 1940s and sit in a classy restaurant. Plus, she is unbelievably sexy and beautiful, even if (or maybe even because) she is a little plump. Women like her and Adele may be the best advocates against the dangerous obsession of thinness… But let’s get back to music. While I adore all her songs released on singles (even her cover of Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance”, although I have to admit the original is still better, but that’s a topic for another occasion), accompanied by kick ass videos, the best song of Caro must be “The Other Woman”, certified by one actual Other Woman I know to be painfully accurate in lyrics. It was a hard choice, though, because the whole album “Deleted Scenes from the Cutting Room Floor” is amazing and I actually went and bought it the day after I heard it at my friends’ house, as I’m sure everyone would, because Caro kicks major ass.

6. Adele – “Rumor Has It”

Another one of 2011 retro singing girls is, of course, Adele, whom I don’t need to introduce. This 50-years-old-black-woman sounding 21 years old white girl revolutionized the scene and rumor has it (see what I did there? 😉 that she’s going to sing the song for the next Bond movie. While I’d prefer it to be Caro doing it (especially after seeing her “That Man” video, strongly inspired by the title sequence to “Dr No”) I have to admit her upbeat jazz fits less to Bond (especially this new, realistic Daniel Craig ones) than Adele’s power and emotion. No surprise here, let’s move on. Especially that the next retro girl on our list is even better than both Caro and Adele.

7. Florence + the Machine – “Blinding”

This English redhead with her band reminds me of classic progressive and psychedelic bands from late 60s/early 70s: Renaissance and Jefferson’s Airplane. Especially that she too sings songs referencing Alice in Wonderland (compare Florence’s “Rabbit Heart” to Jefferson’s “White Rabbit”). The two albums of Florence have been constantly played in my house in the last months. But it’s not the singles that caught my attention the most (although “Drumming Song”, with video clearly inspired by Lady GaGa’s visuals, is awesome). One should also take note of “My Boy Builds Coffins” from “Lungs” and “Seven Devils” from “Ceremonials”, but my absolute favorite is epic “Blinding” – this is a song I can listen to repeatedly for hours, and it always fills me with enormous positive energy. Pure awesomeness!

8. Laïs – “‘t Smidje”

Now, while I dream of those three singing ladies to sing together (which will never happen), I have to mention other three ladies singing together. Lais is a Belgian trio that rocked my world with their 1998 single “’t Smidje” (“About a Blacksmith”). I heard this powerful song on some gala I attended last year, where it accompanied a great group dance called Belgijka (A Belgian). Since then I knew I want this dance and this song on my own wedding, which actually happened, and the crowd loved it. So much, actually, that later I had a chance to dance it again on another wedding of my friends. But weddings aside, the song itself is really good, and the lyrics, though not really fitting on a wedding, are pretty funny once you get to read them.

(to be concluded)

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