Lucie Thorne has a soft, breathy voice that soothes as much as it speaks.
Okay... Wait 'til the next rainy morning. Preheat your oven to 180c. Pop yourself out to your nearest JB or jump on iTunes, and buy a copy of the latest release by Lucie Thorne - Black Across the Field. Stop off at Piedemonte’s (or your the closest thing to it). Buy yourself a nice cut of lamb. Head home and stick that meat in the oven on the low heat along with some ‘taties. Wait for the yummy waft of lunch and line your couch with a blanket of mohair and/or tartain, pop your newly purchased music in whatever you play it with these days, and press play.
Lie down on the couch, watch the rain pour down the window outside - feel the romantic warmth of Lucie's breath-filled voice wash over you.
Pretend you're in Amsterdam - riding down a canal-lined, rain-soaked street in a woolen coat, with no helmet, but heading somewhere warm.
For those of you who don’t live in my head, or who haven’t been to Amsterdam, this is a rainy Sunday indoors filled with a rich warmth, romance, rock, lovesickness and heartbreak. Lucie Thorne has a soft, breathy voice that soothes as much as it speaks. She employs her own lusciously fingered guitar, backed with eloquent piano, soft cymbals and brushes on skins – tightly performed throughout. (Crank the volume up on lullaby “Northern Town” and pay particular attention to drummer Hamish Stuart’s deliciously playful, almost-Spanish themed cymbals in the latter part of the song).
The music floats through guitar folk to hypnotic rock to barely-there piano ballads. Lucie is the star throughout and after the first few blissful tracks I want to hear the full potential that this velvet-whisper voice promises. But the softer theme of the music doesn’t really shift until track 6 – Over In Threes where the tempo and volume goes up two notches. Janis Joplin strength is below the surface and I really want to hear it, but I feel like Lucie doesn’t quite push through a safety barrier that she is more than capable of breaking. Perhaps it’s her style or the theme of the album. I think there’s more to come.
A shame? I’m not sure, it depends what you’re looking for. By listening, I’m invited on a journey through Lucie Thorne’s world and it feels intimate, familiar. Her lyrics take me into a tale that is my own to imagine and finish – setting a mood and drawing an outline, allowing me to engage with the songs and illustrate the story myself. This album is heavenly in the right setting (read lamb roast, Sunday warmth, rainy day, etc above).
I hope to hear Lucie perform live, but the songs on Black Across the Field feel perfect in a room with no-one else. Beautiful, warm, soft. But private.
Lucie Thorne is performing a string of album launch shows across Australia from April to June 2009. Go to www.luciethorne.com or www.myspace.com/luciethornemusic for details. For those readers in Victoria, I think the intimacy of the Palais in Hepburn Springs where Lucie’s playing on 3rd April will suit the narrative of her songs and the smoky beauty of her voice.
Black Across the Field is available through Little Secret / Vitamin Records.