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Soviet Kitsch

Regina Spektor

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Customer Reviews

So ben folds and fiona apple walk into a bar...

Personally, the first thing that came to mind when I first heard this was "Ben Folds meets Fiona Apple." While the vocal stylings bear some semblance to Fiona Apple, her piano work is less sultry and more...whimsical, you might say, which is where the Ben Folds kicks in. This whimsical nature permeates the album, giving Spektor a "devil may care" attitude that allows track 8, "your honor," to fit in perfectly in spite of being a completely different style. Speaking of which, the album as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts; the track arrangement is superb and really amplifies every song on this album. It's best gotten in one sitting with the volume as loud as you can handle, to get the most out of the subtleties. Careful on track 8, though. Instrumentation is minimalist overall; rarely is there little more than piano. While I enjoy this sort of thing, others may not, so be forewarned on that end. A beautiful album, though, if one prefers this style.

Do yourself a favor, and listen to all her stuff immediately.

I am completely awed by this album and by everything I have heard by this artist. It is incredibly refreshing to hear a female singer/songwriter (for lack of a better categorization) bring such imaginative, lively, thought-provoking content to the world of pop music. Her vocal quality is simultaneously raw and impeccable, but perhaps what impresses me the most about her voice, specifically, are the interesting and gutsy ways she's willing to use it. Unlike so many of today's female pop artists, who seem to work very hard to engineer their tones and timbres to sound just like everyone else's, Regina Spektor will, during the course of one song, be almost jarringly in your face--bright and angry and loud and often hardly even 'singing'--and then soften up, revealing an honest, young, vulnerable sound that is just undeniably lovely and also, frankly, requires exceptional vocal control. And all of this, without even mentioning the incredible piano, the sometimes lovely and sometimes bizarre (but always wonderful) melodies, and a lyrical songwriting style that, if you listen closely, will captivate you with its frank, engaging, and sometimes bitter ruminations. Especially splended (and addicting) are 'Ode to Divorce,' 'Us,' and 'Chemo Limo,' but it's really worth having the entire album in order to experience the spectrum of this artist's musical genius. Oh yeah, and get 'Begin to Hope,' her most recent album, too. God, she is so good.

Grows on you.

When I first listened, I had to say I found half of the record to be unlitenable, but after giving it another listen, it just became better and better. Now, I have to say it's quickly becoming a favorite. Standout tracks are: "Us," "Ode to Divorce," "Carbon Monoxide," "Chemo Limo" and "Somedays."

Biography

Born: February 19, 1980 in Moscow, Russia

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

A veteran of New York's anti-folk scene, songwriter Regina Spektor makes quirky, highly eclectic, but always personal music. Born and raised in Moscow until age nine, Spektor listened to her father's bootleg tapes of Western pop and rock as a young child and also learned to play piano. She and her family moved from Russia to the Bronx, where she was immersed in American culture (at the time, hers was the first Russian family in the borough in 20 years). Eventually, Spektor and her family became part...
Full Bio
Soviet Kitsch, Regina Spektor
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