Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Review: 'Bare' by Annie Lennox

'Bare,' Annie Lennox, 2003, j records. Cover: simple and effective. Inside has more pictures of Annie Lennox. Lyrics included. 

We've liked Annie Lennox since the 80s when she was in Eurythmics; we were always fascinated by her voice and her looks -- that short hair, so unusual, and she had it bright red at the time. It didn't hurt that she's Scottish (as we are, on our Dad's side).  

On 'Bare,' her hair is still short, but now it's pale blonde. The voice is the same, though, and still draws you in . . . 

'A Thousand Beautiful Things' is dreamy. Part prayer, part call to a significant other, it could be thought of as a precursor to the prayer of 'Oh God (Prayer)' at the end of the album, although they are very different prayers. 'Pavement Cracks,' about a woman trying to get over a break-up, leads us into 'The Hurting Time,' about how everybody hurts and needs to hurt. 

One of the unusual parts of the CD is in 'Honestly,' wherein Lennox's back-up vocals weave in and out of the main song. The back-up vocals actually have more to say in this song than the main lyrics do, and the way they mix and entwine with the main lyrics is one of the many reasons this album is a must-have for Lennox-philes.  

Then there's the driving 'Wonderful,' the anger in 'Bitter Pill,' and the isolation of 'Loneliness.' A couple realises they're at the end of the relationship in 'The Saddest Song I've Got,' and a romance goes wrong in 'Twisted.' Lennox runs the gamut of emotion in this CD, and it's a treat for anyone listening.

If you are an Annie Lennox fan and haven't got this album, do yourself a favour and get it. If you are not familiar with Annie Lennox, or if you haven't heard her since her days in Eurythmics, do yourself a favour and listen to some of these or other songs on 

Note: mild language. The pictures of Lennox are in the nude (bare), but she's covered. 

Favourite lyrics include: 'The city streets are wet again with rain/But I'm walkin' just the same/Skies turned to the usual grey/When you turn to face the day' ('Pavement Cracks'); 'Don't you ever call me/I don't wanna see your face/Don't you dare to call me/Don't darken up this place' ('Bitter Pill'); 'Well here I go remembering again/All the anger and the blame . . . /People in glass houses shouldn't throw those stones/But . . . something just flew through my window pane' ('Erased'). 

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