Paloma Faith – Do You Want The Truth Or Something Beautiful?
The version of Do You Want The Truth Or Something Beautiful? that I downloaded comes with two live video performances. Her two biggest hits, New York and Stone Cold Sober can each be seen in recordings from a gig at London’s ICA. Paloma Faith’s presence in the videos is very obvious; she appears to be an intriguing character with tremendous talent. At the beginning of the New York video you see Paloma carefully moving miniature chairs across the stage. The purpose of this? Well, apparently there was not one as she quite quickly jumps off of them and burst into the first line of the song. I only had to hear the title of Stone Cold Sober to know that this song would speak true of my life. “You think I’m hazy/a little bit crazy/but I’m stone cold sober”. As a non-drinker who manages to act stupid at parties and who, on occasion, been asked how she felt the morning after a sober night, I know that an alcohol-free night can still lead to craziness.
Her three singles, the two aforementioned along with the title’s namesake, made Paloma a household name. However she remains notably absent from this year’s Brits nominations. I feel a little disappointed for Paloma as DYWTTOSB? is a really impressive album that is more than deserving of a nomination.
Tracks such as Romance Is Dead and Broken Doll immediately sold me to become a fan. I’ll be the first to admit, that upon seeing Paloma’s appearance on Never Mind The Buzzcocks I was a little suspect about her being ‘yet another Winehouse wannabe’. These tracks have proven me wrong. Paloma has her own sound and her own songs that need no comparisons to be made.
Romance Is Dead sings true of the sordid state of relationships in today’s world. Pre-wrote birthday cards and email communication suggest that the death of romance is actually a lot more real than you might think. With the over-commercialised Valentines Day approaching, I reckon guys should take note of these lyrics and prove that there are still some original, thoughtful men out there.
“I’m a broken doll/You’re the puppeteer” are the opening lines of Broken Doll. It’s a song that’s, perhaps, been written about wanting control in a relationship. She sings of being “scared of shadows in the night” and similar clichés about nightmares and loneliness. For someone so anti-cliché in Romance Is Dead I find it interesting to hear her take on dreams of romance in a different way.
Softer vocals are used by Paloma in Stargazer and Press Lightly showing that Paloma isn’t a one trick horse, whilst the opening of Upside Down sounds almost as though the music has been taken from an old black and white movie. And in Play On you’re greeted with a solemn violin introduction before the vocals kick in. Various instruments are used throughout the album making each song different from the previous.
Smoke & Mirrors and My Legs Are Weak are both catchy but fit in as ‘album tracks’ more so than other songs which I see as having a lot more potential.
All in all, I really like this album. I wouldn’t go so far to say I love it. But I certainly enjoy listening to it again and again. Clearly I am a fan, as I’ve now got tickets to see her in Cambridge on March 23rd. Stay tuned for a review.