The artwork on this, the 3rd album from the London based songstress, conjures up a bygone era. The 1940's to be exact. A time when the world was at war and Britain had its heroes. A time where girl next door stars like Vera Lynn and Gracie Fields were all the fashion. This era obviously hold a fascination for Carr, but while the song titles are evocative of that time (The White Cliffs, Berliner Ring, Army..... you get the idea), the music is far more current.
Carr's vocals have a breathy quality, sort of Beth Orton meets Cara Dillon with hints of Eleanor McEvoy, but with an undeniable Englishness about it. Musically she takes her influences from the world of folk and mixes it with electonica and lush arrangements for a soundtrack that while not grabbing you on the first listen, certainly grows on you with repeated plays. This is music that requires a wee bit of work on the listeners behalf, but the rewards are certainly worth it.
After the brief opener, Star Song, we are introduced to the wonderful Sparkle, a mesmerising song that has a music box quality about it. Hot on its heals is Berliner Ring, the accordion and arrangement giving it a Parisian feel, conjuring up images of the bustling clubs of occupied France, where glamorous singers entertained the officers and well heeled of Paris.
Carr has an undeniable skill as a song writer and lyricist. Her ability to use music to transport you to another place and time is extraordinary, with tracks like the exquisite Belladonna and the dreamy Violetta proving this beautifully.
This album is a scrapbook of characters, places and stories from deep inside Carr's imagination and it has been a mesmerising experience to glimpse into her world. I can't fault this album. Quite simply it is a masterpiece.