Natalie Imbruglia – Male
It has been six years since Natalie Imbruglia’s last album, Come To Life. Now the Australian singer returns with her latest work, Male. The entire album is covers of male artists, which, as Imbruglia explained, was because it’s “much more fun to do covers of male artists”. The compilation of tracks includes covers from artists such as The Cure, Damien Rice, Death Cab for Cutie and Neil Young.
The record starts out with lead single Instant Crush, introducing a “lost love”, heartache theme that runs throughout. It’s certainly the highlight of Male, leading into Natalie’s smoothed-over version of Damien Rice’s Cannonball. The Summer is a catchy little addition that works perfectly with Imbruglia’s harmonic vocals, as does the touching Goodbye in His Eyes. The Cure’s Friday I’m in Love receives a rewardingly more melodic treatment and sits as one of the best tracks on the album.
The latter half isn’t quite as strong, with songs such as Let My Love Open the Door, Only Love Can Break Your Heart and The Wind all falling on the ears as a little underwhelming and forgettable due to the lack of diversity. It’s hit-and-miss with certain tracks as to whether the stripped-back musical arrangements take too much individuality away from each song; too many of these covers sound reminiscent of each other possibly due to the abundance of acoustics.
Male by its very concept obviously suffers from a lack of originality. It seems as if it’s Imbruglia’s way of easing back into her creative spectrum as the project isn’t as daring or adventurous as it could be, considering both the classical and contemporary range of influencings. Still, the album definitely has some great tracks worth hearing and succeeds in displaying a clever choice of songs. Natalie’s delicate voice is beautifully explored while the album gives a flavour of her emerging personality.
Male was released in Europe on 21st August 2015, for further information or to order the album visit here.
Watch the video for Instant Crush here: