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Album Review

Since she works in a genre commonly tagged as adult contemporary pop, it's easy for some critics to dismiss Sophie B. Hawkins, but she's much more adventurous than most of her adult pop peers. That wasn't immediately evident on her debut, Tongues and Tails, even if "Damn, I Wish I Was Your Lover" playfully twisted sexual conventions, but Whaler showed significant progress. Her third album, Timbre, explores even greater territory, even if it's in subtle ways. Hawkins favors strong melodies and clean, polished productions, which makes her music enjoyable on a surface level, but it also reveals more upon each subsequent play. Certain quirks are self-evident upon an initial listen — the beatnik pretensions of "The Darkest Childe," which ultimately sinks under its own poetic weight — but the genuinely intriguing moments, such as the weirdly exotic instrumentations and evocative lyrics, only appear upon repeated spins. By that point, Timbre has slowly, surely worked its way into the subconscious — Hawkins' songs are melodic, yet they blossom and become memorable over time. She has crafted two rewarding albums prior to Timbre, yet this may be her best yet. It lacks a standout single on the lines of "Damn, I Wish I Was Your Lover" or "As I Lay Me Down," but song for song, it's impressively consistent, and her performances are remarkably assured, elevating Timbre to her finest moment yet.

Customer Reviews

Inconsistent, but worth it...

This album is mostly forgotten by the mainstream... but if you are a Sophie fan, then don't even think about skipping this album. Some of the songs can be skipped (I like them, but can't listen to them around my young children) but some of the songs are so fantastic, so sexy, that you can't ignore them. Amazing album. Just like all of her others. Can't wait for more!

Amazing, every moment

Sophie delivers every time. Her music is unusual, unique and very satisfying. She blends harmonies so well and everything is layered and so rich and melodical. You notice something new every time you listen to it. Fantastic, sultry, amazing. Love every minute.

When Sophie sings, it almost sounds like she's about to cry

This album was finally released after a lengthly battle for Sophie to be released from her contract with Sony/Colombia Records. The songs range from a mix of light & dark themes which is in accord with the music that Sophie has always made (if you were paying attention and read between the lines of her previous albums) It is disappointing to see that people only know Sophie for her "Damn I wish I was your Lover" & "As I lay Me Down" songs, when she made some beautiful pop/rock songs since her debut in 1992. Sophie does not deserve to be placed in a category as trivial as a "One-Hit-Wonder". Very few people can pull off being naked and confessional as artists without becoming lackluster or attention (rhymes with bores). If you like mass produced pop stars who karaoke their way to fame then Sophie B. Hawkins is not for you. If you like artists that dare to be honest, undaunted and write their own music, then give Sophie a chance. One of my personal favorite songs off this album is the Demo version of "No Connection"/ Along with her cover of Bob Dylan's "I Want You" (from her debut) a true pop gem that deserves a listen and another & another ;-)

Peaceoutshe'llkillyoulikeUma!!!

Biography

Born: November 1, 1967 in Manhattan, New York, NY

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

A proudly idiosyncratic singer and songwriter who embraces an eclectic range of musical influences and isn't afraid to be nakedly confessional in her music, Sophie B. Hawkins enjoyed unexpected commercial success with her debut album, but since then has opted to follow her muse rather than a major label's marketing department. Sophie Ballantine Hawkins was born in New York City on November 1, 1967. Hawkins grew up in a family that valued art and creativity but was troubled by alcoholism, and as a...
Full Bio
Timbre, Sophie B. Hawkins
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