Lennon

Career Suicide

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Nu-metal crooner Lennon Murphy shows her singer/songwriter side with the bare-bones Career Suicide. Originally released in 2003 through the artist's website, this piano-led journal of lovelorn angst and winsome melancholy features five cuts from her 2001 debut, 5:30 Saturday Morning, as well as five new tracks. Murphy finds her inner Fiona Apple/Alanis Morissette and channels it through Nine Inch Nails' "Something I Can Never Have" with mixed results. While the desperation that fuels standout tracks like "Jacob" and "Brake of Your Car" seems genuine, the singer seems lost without her band, as she's not a particularly astonishing piano player, and the stripped-down atmosphere of the record exposes her lack of vocal range. Murphy is at her best and most comfortable when the material is at its quietest -- "And You," with its whispery eggshell melody, perfectly captures the intimacy that she's aiming for -- and those brave enough to wade through the record's many indulgences will find solace in the beautiful string-laden closer, "Asking You." Fans of Lennon's more aggressive work will find this deviation interesting enough, but Career Suicide is essentially a high-quality demo from an artist still in the making.

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