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by Tracey ThornTracey Thorn


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Seeing the name Tracey Thorn on the cover of a record means there will be things within the grooves that one can count on: thoughtful lyrics that feel intensely personal while still being effortlessly relatable; her incredibly rich voice (which hasn't aged one bit over the years); and songs that have a warmth baked into their core even when they are disco-ball glittery and perfectly produced, since she only uses collaborators fully attuned to her finer qualities. Released in 2018, Record is no exception to the rule, and even though Thorn throws in a twist to her formula here and there, it's both of a piece with her previous work and a very worthwhile addition. Thorn worked with longtime collaborator Ewan Pearson, and the pair called on a cast of talented people to help make the record. Warpaint drummer Stella Mozgawa provides rock-solid beats on much of the album; her bandmate Jenny Lee Lindberg handles bass on a song; Jagwar Ma's Jono Ma adds some guitar firepower to a couple tracks; Shura plays guitar and sings on a song; and Corinne Bailey Rae duets with Thorn on one of the album's best songs, the slow-motion disco track "Sister." The diverse cast of musicians is matched by the variety of songs and sounds found here as well. Calmly bubbling electropop ("Air") bumps up against hooky new wave ("Guitar"), brooding piano ballads ("Smoke") lead into expansive indie pop that sounds like a sincere Pulp ("Babies"), and deeply felt synth pop laments segue into sparkling disco-pop with fat basslines and rippling synths ("Dancefloor"), with the one constant being Thorn's powerful singing. She fills the speakers with booming, beating emotion as she looks back at her life -- sometimes fondly, sometimes not -- talking about the music and people that shaped her along the way into the fully realized artist she is now. It's not a delicate look back either; she spares not fools and doesn't back down from a fight. Especially on "Sister," which powerfully laments the lack of progress women have made against those who seek to put them down in various ways. This clear-eyed view of the past and the care put into the sound make this one of the most rewarding albums Thorn has made in a career full of great records and classic songs. She shows no signs of slowing down on Record; her voice and songs are as impressive and important as ever.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/02/2018
Label: Merge Records
UPC: 0673855061924
catalogNumber: 619
Rank: 33937

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Tracey Thorn   Primary Artist,Synthesizer,Piano,Electric Guitar,Vocals
Martin Ditcham   Percussion
Ewan Pearson   Synthesizer,Moog Synthesizer,Mellotron,Vocoder,Syncussion,Divan
Corinne Bailey Rae   Background Vocals
Stella Mozgawa   Drums,Hi Hat
Jenny Lee Lindberg   Bass
Jono Ma   Synthesizer,Electric Guitar
Clare Wheeler   Violin
Shura   Electric Guitar,Background Vocals,Juno
John Opstad   Synthesizer

Technical Credits

Tracey Thorn   Composer
Ewan Pearson   Producer,Engineer,drum programming,Sequencers,String Samples
John Gilsenan   Artwork
Matthew Johnson   Engineer
Marta Salogni   Engineer
Stephen James Brown   Engineer
John Opstad   Violin Arrangement

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