Album Review

A Joyful Noise

A Joyful Noise

by Gossip

Sony Music
7 / 10
2nd July 2012

Reviewed by Jennifer Kirby

Beth Ditto is somewhat of an acquired taste. However, regardless of your feelings about her music or her larger-than-life persona, nobody could deny that the girl has pipes. On the latest album, A Joyful Noise, Ditto and the band offer a generally sophisticated collection of pop/rock songs that showcase her extensive vocal range. A Joyful Noise is therefore the band’s most accomplished and consistent release to date and should satisfy a wide audience.

Opener ‘Melody Emergency ‘sets the mood, brimming with gusto and confidence as Ditto storms through the track. The pace doesn’t relent as the album continues with single and album standout ‘Perfect World’, a large scale rock ballad that hits all the right marks. On these early tracks the strength and clarity of Ditto’s voice recalls, somewhat surprisingly, that other iconoclastic figure, the young Madonna. Meanwhile the band provides driving rhythms and strong melodic lines to match her vocal acrobatics. This combination produces songs that are instantly memorable. Elsewhere, some generic flourishes add flavour to the album. 'Horns' has an endearing soul/funk vibe, while ‘Into The Wild’ is a textbook perfect pop song.

However, what stops this album from being an absolute classic is that a few of the later songs have a kind of sameness about them and the bombastic tone eventually becomes somewhat wearying. Having said this, there are enough really excellent tracks to redeem the album and to ensure that A Joyful Noise does in fact live up to its title.

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