May 17, 2008

SOMEWHERE A BOND THEME JUST FOUND ITS SINGER:

Duffy's debut album, 'Rockferry,' is reminiscent of the decade's retro sound and girl group singers. (John Payne, 5/13/08, Los Angeles Times)

Duffy

Rockferry

(Mercury)

* * * 1/2

At 23, singer Duffy brings a wizened depth to the songs on her debut album that belies her youth and roots in a small town in Wales. On "Rockferry," the former waitress deals in wistful, cloudy-day soul -- the title track characteristically frames her razor-thin but warm voice in the widescreen rolling lushness of strings. It's a very early-'60s retro sound, and Duffy's languid vocal precision and economic use of "soul" inflections easily cut through the vast sonic dimensions.

Summoning reference to '60s singers like Ronnie Spector and Dusty Springfield, Duffy makes the airily dramatic "Warwick Avenue" and the slow, funky steam of "Serious" showcases for her low-key vocal tricks.


Welsh Voice Crooning American Soul (JON CARAMANICA, NY Times)
The debut album by the Welsh soul revivalist Duffy, “Rockferry” (Mercury), is an exercise in control. Her voice is subtle, pristine and evocative — there are shades of Motown, more Mary Wells than Diana Ross — and her songs, of which she is a co-writer, are neatly layered and womblike. At worst, her music is successful mimicry, but much more often Duffy strikes notes of blissful languor. She never tests herself, but she doesn’t have to; she teases, she confesses, and she says goodbye. “Rockferry” is, in every way, smooth. [...]

Duffy doesn’t flaunt soul bona fides as heavily as her fellow British retro-belter Amy Winehouse, probably because she doesn’t have them. Her first release was a Welsh-language pop-rock EP in 2004. She was introduced to classic soul just a few years ago, soaking it in at the urging of Bernard Butler, formerly a guitarist for the British rock band Suede, who is one of the producers of “Rockferry.”

And so, while she is now well schooled, she is not distractingly faithful.


Posted by Orrin Judd at May 17, 2008 6:47 AM
Comments

I liked that first one a lot. Second one was okay.

Posted by: Twn at May 17, 2008 1:56 PM

I downloaded the free song "Mercy" from iTunes and I really liked it. It is funny this gal and Amy Winehouse sound like they came from MoTown.

Amy Winehouse is a train-wreck; however, this gal seems to be the opposite of Winehouse (relatively speaking for the entertainment industry).

Posted by: pchuck at May 18, 2008 11:18 AM
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