Leona Naess

Comatised

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Listening to Leona Naess' debut album, Comatised, the first thing one notices about her singing is how much she sounds like Edie Brickell. But this CD also proves that the British singer/songwriter is very much her own person. Naess' airy vocals might have a very Brickell-ish quality, but it's clear that a lot of other artists have had an impact on her introspective brand of alternative pop/rock. One can hear that Naess has been affected by fellow singer/songwriters -- Joni Mitchell, Tori Amos, and Beth Orton are among the names that come to mind -- and there are also hints of the Cure, David Bowie, Joy Division, and other British rockers in her work. Naess claims Tracy Chapman as a major influence, although Naess' voice doesn't sound anything like Chapman's. However, there are slight traces of Chapman in some of Naess' writing, but unlike Chapman, she doesn't bring a heavy sociopolitical agenda to the table. Rather, Naess chooses to make relationships and emotions her focus on this fairly promising, if imperfect, debut.

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