- 30 Aug 11
Irish songwriter, alone, again, naturally
Coming swiftly after her recent album I’d Rather Go Blonde, Alone is essentially a ‘live in the studio’ reworking of some of Eleanor McEvoy’s classiest songs. Using little more than McEvoy’s expressive voice and her trusty guitar, it confirms that when you strip her best work down to the bare bones you discover the raw artistry that distinguishes the truly talented from the also-rans.
McEvoy’s wry humour gets full play on ‘For Avoidance Of Any Doubt’ which deals with a failing relationship in hilarious legalese. A different means of (mis)communication provokes the bleak pain of the angry ‘What’s Her Name’, while ‘You’ll Hear Better Songs Than This’, ‘I’ll Be Willing’ and ‘Did I Hurt You’ are not merely love songs par excellence but are thankfully devoid of clichés and empty platitudes. ‘Only A Woman’s Heart’ and ‘Harbour’ explore darker, more sensitive, aspects of life and love. McEvoy’s ability to deal with serious subjects shines through in ‘Sophie’, an unsettlingly graphic song about anorexia, and casual relationships in ‘Just For The Tourists’ (written with ex-Beautiful South’s Dave Rotheray). There’s also something prophetic, and timely, about her chilling take on Barry McGuire’s hit ‘Eve Of Destruction’, the only cover here.
McEvoy’s voice has a depth of expression born from living the songs rather than just singing them. It’s a genuine privilege to be on the outside looking in.