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Natalie Imbruglia is new to me and I love investigating new artists. Her music is easy on the ears and her voice is soft. I have listened to this cd over and over, and it’s already been added to my beloved Zune. It’s little wonder that Natalie Imbruglia is a three time Grammy nominee! She’s also a songwriter, actor and model.
Imbruglia, best known for her 1997 hit song “Torn” and the accompanying video, finds inspiration for her new album from male songwriters that she loves. As the title suggests, Male – her first album since 2009 – is a collection of classic and contemporary songs all performed by men including Cat Stevens (“The Wind”), Tom Petty (“The Waiting”), Neil Young (“Only Love Can Break Your Heart”), Damien Rice (“Cannonball”), Pete Townshend (“Let My Love Open the Door”) and Sam Beam of Iron & Wine (“Naked As We Came”).
Of the album concept, Imbruglia, who hails from Australia says, “I was drawn to songs by men, but wanted to show a woman’s take on them. I also wanted something organic and vocally-driven, not heavily produced, and with real musicians. Most importantly, I had to be emotionally connected to all of the songs.”
Male’s first single is the lead track “Instant Crush,” which was originally recorded by the electro-pop Grammy winners Daft Punk. The song was written by the duo’s Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo, along with The Strokes’ Julian Casablancas who also sang on the original track. The music video made its debut exclusively on Entertainment Tonight and Mashable.com – check it out here.
“On the original version, you can’t really hear what the song is about because of the effect that Julian’s voice has, which I love, by the way,” says Imbruglia. “However, it is such a beautiful story that I want people to hear it and connect with the words. I’m really proud of the way it turned out.”
Also central to Imbruglia’s Male concept was her desire to find songs that could be transformed by a female’s interpretation. She did just that with producer Billy Mann, who has also worked with artists like Pink, John Legend, Celine Dion, Martina McBride, and Sting, among others.
“It was about finding different ways to recreate songs from a female point of view, and at the same time staying true to the original,” continues Imbruglia. “A lot of them were written by artists I love, whose music has had a big effect on me. However, I also discovered others for the first time, like the Zac Brown Band and their song ‘Goodbye in His Eyes,’ which made the process a lot of fun. My voice really lends itself to that song, and I love a little bit of country.”
Imbruglia likewise gives a surprising country approach to The Cure’s “Friday I’m in Love.” Her version employs a banjitar banjo/guitar combo. “I can tell this song is going to be one of my favorites to play live, I love it.”
“Torn” still sounds fresh today as evidenced by its ongoing radio airplay and ubiquity on multiple Spotify playlists, which have generated over 30 million streams. While this iconic hit brought Imbruglia international fame along with three Grammy nominations and the 1998 MTV Video Music Award for “Best New Artist,” she is a woman of many talents. Her pop music success followed an acting role in the long-running Australian TV drama series Neighbours, in which she played the role of Beth Brennan. Over the last three years she has been studying acting in Los Angeles and also made her U.K. stage debut in Alan Aycbourn’s Things We Do For Love. Imbruglia is a global ambassador for Virgin Unite, the non-profit foundation for The Virgin Group and is the spokesperson for the U.N campaign to end fistula.
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MALE Track listing
- Instant Crush (Daft Punk)
- Cannonball (Damien Rice)
- The Summer (Josh Pyke)
- I’ll Follow You into the Dark (Death Cab for Cutie)
- Goodbye in His Eyes (Zac Brown Band)
- Friday I’m in Love (The Cure)
- Naked as We Came (Iron & Wine)
- Let My Love Open the Door (Pete Townshend)
- Only Love Can Break Your Heart (Neil Young)
- I Melt with You (Modern English)
- The Waiting (Tom Petty)
- The Wind (Cat Stevens)
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