(19 December 2004) How to describe the debut album by New York/New Jersey singer-songwriter "A Girl Called Eddy?" Bacharach-esque with a dose of Dusty Springfield, Chrissy Hynde and pinches of Ray Orbison topped off with a Portishead-inspired modern moodiness? Well--maybe. But, really "brilliant" might be the best adjective to apply. Erin Moran, (aka "A Girl Called Eddy") has, with her first effort, certainly caught the ears of critics and fans alike. With a dusky and effortless vocal style, A Girl Called Eddy (ANTI (USA) 86719-2, 2004) breathes heartbreak and intimacy into each song on her self-titled album.
In fact, it is hard to believe that this is "A Girl Called Eddy's" first major release. Produced by Richard Hawley ("Pulp") and Colin Elliot, Ms. Moran exudes the type of vocal self-assuredness that is usually a hallmark of veteran artists. With impeccable instrumentation and arrangments, the 11 tracks on A Girl Called Eddy are imbued with a sensual immediacy that strikes the heart and mind.
Take the downtempo "Kathleen," with its deep-brooding guitar rifts, chamber strings and minor chord progression--it is difficult to think of a more perfectly-crafted song than this. The iridescent "Did you See the Moon Tonight" is a perfect romantic gem of classical late-60s folkiness. Simply gorgeous.
The sweet and swinging "Somebody Hurt You" is a tender ballad of whispered longing, while the bass-dronings of "Little Bird" create a rich sonic bed for "A Girl Called Eddy's" gentle musings.
Drawing upon myriad influences from the past and present, "A Girl Called Eddy" has created something that is both familiar and original. While the overall "vibe"
of the disc is subtly rainy, the warmness of Ms. Moran's vocals and the lazy-day ambience works to wonderful effect. Extremely high marks for this exceptional album.--Justin Elswick