Emmy The Great – S ep

Emmy The Great - S

Emmy The Great – S

It is almost seven years since I first heard Emmy The Great, on a compilation from the Something In Construction label, and in a world that is sometimes full of women with guitars and not a lot else, Emmy’s newest release is as resonant and memorable as I thought ‘Gabriel’ was in 2008. Each of its four tracks shows a separate facet of Emmy’s music, alternately ethereal, delicate, assertive and mysterious, but sharing a common thread of Emmy’s uncluttered guitar and poised, verging on fragile vocal.

“Swimming Pool” is a song that properly fulfills the description of dreampop, an evocative tune around which Emmy weaves a layered production of phased electronics that is as compelling as it is poised, and as heartfelt a performance as I’ve heard from any singer songwriter recently. Emmy duets the vocal with an uncredited male partner, merely adding to the songs elegiac qualities. It’s a track that is going to be heard a lot in the next few months and in a music world swirling with melodic ballads, one that has the ability to make its impression away form those of us that are already convinced of Emmy’s own particular genius.

“Social Halo” is a more than convincing follow up to the first track, produced with a touch less grandeur but no less effective for that and a quirky romanticism to the lyrics: ‘I saw you today in Soho, and all of your friends they call me Yoko’ , as the guitar chords chime and the rhythm track takes on a grittier urbanity. “Solar Panels” is where Emmy takes a road trip to California, passing a large solar installation which inspires a clubby rave type response and a lyrical overview of the growing solar industries across the globe, ‘hope is spinning like a windmill’ intones Emmy over a thudding synth backing that properly belongs in a large nightclub.

Lastly “Somerset” is a more refined dissection of a relationship in a crisis of some sort, ‘let’s talk about something that’s real like / please don’t get over me’ sings Emmy to a perhaps fictional and seemingly disinterested lover, and with whom she would like to discuss less literature including W. Somerset Maugham from whom the song takes its title (along with Tennessee Williams and F Scott Fitzgerald), although the song could just have been called “Please Don’t Get Over Me” with little difference made to its quite genuine sounding plea for recognition, either literary or in some other form.

There are so many female singer songwriters making their presences known but Emmy The Great has a niche entirely of her own today, and that is all down to her songwriting and an elusive personality that avoids overlaying her actual charm. My only real criticism of S is that it isn’t a full album, and if Emmy and her friends are anywhere near you in the next few months, I really would recommend that you let she and them pay you a visit.