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+ Donato Wharton - Body Isolations
+ Svalastog - Woodwork
+ Tim Hecker - Harmony In Ultraviolet
+ Rosy Parlane - Jessamine
+ Jarvis Cocker - The Jarvis Cocker Record
+ Múm - Peel Session
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+ The Places - Songs For Creeps
+ Camille - Le Fil
+ Wolf Eyes - Human Animal
+ Christina Carter - Electrice
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+ Bob Dylan - Modern Times
+ Excepter - Alternation
+ Chris Thile - How To Grow A Woman From The Ground
+ Brad Mehldau - Live in Japan
+ M Ward - Post-War
+ Various Artists - Touch 25
+ The Mountain Goats - Get Lonely
+ The White Birch - Come Up For Air
+ Camera Obscura - Let's Get Out of This Country
+ Coachwhips - Double Death
+ Various Artists - Tibetan And Bhutanese Instrumental And Folk Music, Volume 2
+ Giuseppe Ielasi - Giuseppe Ielasi
+ Cex - Actual Fucking
+ Sufjan Stevens - The Avalanche
+ Leafcutter John - The Forest And The Sea
+ Carla Bozulich - Evangelista
+ Barbara Morgenstern - The Grass Is Always Greener
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+ Peaches - Impeach My Bush
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+ Klee - Honeysuckle
+ The Court & Spark - Hearts
+ TV On The Radio - Return To Cookie Mountain
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+ Jenny Wilson - Love And Youth
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+ The Moore Brothers - Murdered By The Moore Brothers
+ Regina Spektor - Begin To Hope
+ The 1900s - Plume Delivery EP
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+ Function - The Secret Miracle Fountain
+ Sonic Youth - Rather Ripped
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+ Boris - Pink
+ Deadboy And The Elephantmen - We Are Night Sky
+ Glissandro 70 - Glissandro 70
+ Calexico - Garden Ruin (Review #2)
+ Calexico - Garden Ruin (Review #1)
+ The Flaming Lips - At War With The Mystics
+ The Glass Family - Sleep Inside This Wheel
+ Various Artists - Songs For Sixty Five Roses
+ The Fiery Furnaces - Bitter Tea
+ Motorpsycho - Black Hole/Blank Canvas
+ The Red Krayola - Introduction
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+ Sondre Lerche And The Faces Down Quartet - Duper Sessions
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A Girl Called Eddy
A Girl Called Eddy

Three years ago, Eddy Moran debuted as A Girl Called Eddy (paying tribute to her hero Dusty Springfield's 1964 album A Girl Called Dusty), such a cutesy moniker adorning the debutante (costume) ball where Moran found love and love-lost. Crying Tears All Over Town, she charted a masterpiece in five songs, its romantic, melancholic piano ballads introducing a beautiful vocalist and brilliant songsmith in one. The EP cemented her place in the sophisticated-pop type underground as a girl to watch, a girl (called Eddy) to rival girls called Kendall or Cracknell.

It's taken her forever to author the follow-up, finally fronting with her first full-length, which forsakes some of the quiet intimacy she so graciously grew for her debut, this disc not being afraid to indulge in intermittent bouts of orchestral spectacle. Produced by former Pulp guitarist Richard Hawley — whose own Roy Orbison-inspired solo albums share a similarity in aesthetic spirit with Moran's music — this self-titled set is a loving celebration of old-fashioned songcraft, all beautiful orchestration, carefully placed microphones, mood-specific key changes, good taste and ostentatiousness. The opening bars of the brilliant "Heartache" — first heard on the EP, now reprised, in even sadder shades, here — even pay particular heed to Bacharach & David, evoking the familiar chords of The Carpenters' "(They Long to Be) Close to You" in its most melancholy opening. Of course, pastiche is easy to do, but Moran isn't just some slavish student of torch song. At the core of her songs are profoundly personal emotions, and drop-dead orchestral ballads like "Did You See the Moon Tonight" manage to marry raw feeling and refined arrangement with aesthetic ease. Whilst a cautiousness and a preciousness are here that weren't on that fateful first dance, that's but a small mark against a grand disc.

by Anthony Carew

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