emiliana torrini must be smiling a huge icelandic smile right now. following a six-year gap after the album ‘love in the time of the science’, she returned last year with the gorgeous acoustic album ‘fisherman’s woman’. full of beautiful, rural scandanavian fantasy, the album (for me) was an instant triumph.
i remember 1999’s ‘love in the time of the science’ as being an attempt to position torrini as iceland’s next great kooky female export after bjork. she shared the same electronic whimsy that we’d come to expect from ms gudmundsdottir, yet with a major label pop-hit makeover – essentially a carbon copy without any of bjork‘s leftfield panache. still, i loved it all the same.
in between, there’s been collabs with thievery corporation and paul oakenfold; providing the soaring vox for ‘gollum’s song’ (that played out over the closing credits for LOTR: the two towers) and the not-so-insignificant matter of writing kylie‘s uk no.1 ‘slow’. all this serves to prove that torrini is not only an outstanding vocalist, but a songwriter of growing stature.
but for my all-time-pick-of-the-torrini-hits, i have to go back to gus gus‘s 1997 ‘polydistortion’ (still one of my top 50 favourite albums), wherein emiliani drops two stunning vocals on ‘is jesus your pal?’ and the exquisite ‘why?’.
above, there’s two mp3s of the singles from ‘fisherman’s woman’, taken from the planet claire site (born from a french radio station). they have an extensive library of session mp3s from the likes of art brut, animal collective, fog, deifenbach and more. an excellent resource, well worth ten minutes of your time.