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Emily Baker – House of Cards

March 4, 2011 by  

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Emily Baker – House of Cards

NAME: Emily Baker
ALBUM: House of Cards
DATE: 14April2011

LABEL: Little Love Records


FIVE WORD REVIEW: Very Very Very Very Nice

LOCATION: Brighton, UK

LINE UP: Emily Baker – Vocals, Guitars, Ukulele, Glock, Percussion. Rachael Wood – Electric Guitar, Banjo, Ukulele.


WHAT’S THE STORY?: ‘House of Cards’ is the debut effort from prize-winning Brighton native Emily Baker. (The prize being the coveted 2009 Arts Foundations Songwriting Award.) It’s taken a while to cobble together from such illustrious beginnings but at last it is upon us, rejoice! Meanwhile, Emily has been touring with all and sundry and is preparing to do so again on the back of this lovingly produced summery record.

SOUNDS LIKE: Every fathomable guitar-ish instrument gets a look in here, as ukes and banjos appear every now and again to veer the album in a distinctly folk-y direction. Emily Baker is an accomplished musician and most definitely an impressive songwriter. Yet for all these plus points, ‘House of Cards’ fails to completely launch, chosing instead to languish in a cuddly middle ground that is not in any way offensive, but could get fairly dull.

It opens in staid fashion with ‘Hit and Run,’ a mellow Sunday morning-y lilt that meanders along quite nicely without causing much fuss. Strange choice for an intro track but alright, we can deal with it. Despite the lack of oomph it’s warm enough, with background ‘oohs’ and key-changes. Could be nice in the background while lazily cleaning your kitchen, lukewarm cup of tea in hand, contemplating the week that has just past as hazy sunshine streams in through a dusty window. Ahhh.. Title track ‘House of Cards’ picks up the pace a bit, being somewhat a highlight and pretty reminiscent of late 90’s Texas. Catchy in the nicest possible way, but not exactly exploding with melody. Following this, the album progresses much as you would expect it to, light and nicely produced but not much to write home about. Sure, there are enough occasional quirks revealing slight eccentricities that deviate the album slightly from standard singer-songwriter territory. ‘Fools’ provides a good example of this, a whimsical jaunt with enough twinkling xylophone and piano to set it apart from the mellow glut of songs that came before it.

‘House of Cards’ will leave you in no doubt about Emily Baker’s song writing skill, and in it’s own quiet way, this album is very impressive. Beautifully crafted, someone out there will love this record very dearly. It’ll surely nestle comfortably alongside David Grey, Dido and friends on your shelf, next to half a bottle of moderately priced red wine and some scented candles. Scented, but not too scented. Because that’s just the kinda guy you are.

YOU’LL LIKE THIS IF: You sit firmly in the middle of the road


Submitted By Nadia



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