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This Is the Life [Bonus Track]
     

This Is the Life [Bonus Track]

by Amy MacDonald
 

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Don’t lump Amy MacDonald in with 2008’s crop of young British soul singers -- the Scottish singer-songwriter was born to strum furiously on guitar. This Is the Life roared out the gate in the U.K., entering the charts at No. 2, and it’s little wonder: a teenager whose pop smarts belie her years, MacDonald’s debut boasts more potential hits than an English

Overview

Don’t lump Amy MacDonald in with 2008’s crop of young British soul singers -- the Scottish singer-songwriter was born to strum furiously on guitar. This Is the Life roared out the gate in the U.K., entering the charts at No. 2, and it’s little wonder: a teenager whose pop smarts belie her years, MacDonald’s debut boasts more potential hits than an English soccer stadium five minutes before the final goal. She avers influences from the Libertines to the Red Hot Chili Peppers, but more, em, mature listeners will hear echoes of the finest U.K. ‘80s post-punk, from ska- and skiffle-flavored pub rock à la Katrina and the Waves and Kirsty MacColl to the dream-pop of the Cranberries. The addictive title track showcases the delightful burr in MacDonald’s voice in a smart, acoustic-based arrangement that packs punk energy into a folksy package last heard this successfully via Dexys Midnight Runners. Of course, MacDonald wouldn’t have entranced her home country with her discerning taste in new wave alone; lyrically, she sums up the struggles of a certain kind of young lass we all know, the one hanging on the periphery of the burnouts and Goths, a little too smart to follow the crowd. But it’s those inescapably catchy songs that set Amy MacDonald apart from similar indie spirits such as Regina Spektor -- pure breezy pop that comes from a small, intimate place but, as This Is the Life proves, can grow very, very big.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Sharon Mawer
The debut album from Scottish singer/songwriter Amy MacDonald, This Is the Life achieved a remarkable feat -- it entered the charts at number two. MacDonald admits that the song "Poison Prince," which received a limited release as a single, is based on the life of Babyshambles and Libertines singer Pete Doherty but the first nationally released single, "Mr. Rock & Roll," has nothing whatever to do with him. With a finger on the pulse of news items of 2007, she sings on "Footballer's Wife" about WAG (wives and girlfriends) culture, famous for nothing much more than their celebrity partners. The title track, "This Is the Life," reflects the lifestyle she had always wanted to follow since the early days of practicing the guitar and honing her songwriting skills; "Let's Start a Band" is exactly that, a song about being successful in the fickle career of pop music, a theme that is further developed on the song "Barrowland Ballroom," named after a venue in Glasgow that many an aspiring artist wishes to play in. MacDonald captures the feelings of ordinary people in the crowd wishing that something exciting would happen in their lives ("I wish I saw Bowie playing on that stage"). There is a nostalgic feel to the album, conjuring up vocal images of Kirsty MacColl, and even the album cover evokes the album art of the '70s, looking like the corners have worn away with age. [A 2007 edition included a bonus track, "The Road to Home."]
Paste Magazine
MacDonald's infectious guitar hooks and sublime harmonies position her at the top of a genre replete with copycats.

Product Details

Release Date:
09/04/2007
Label:
Universal Uk
UPC:
0602517321243
catalogNumber:
1732124

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