Sandi Thom – Smile…It Confuses People

January 31st, 2007
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A Breath of Fresh Air

There’s something instantly likeable about singer-songwriter Sandi Thom. Her debut album, “Smile…It Confuses People,” is big on personality. It’s quirky, energetic and soulful.Thom gained fame web-casting her three week “world tour” without leaving her South London basement, putting the word out via MySpace and her website. She started with a handful of listeners and ended with enough to fill a stadium. Never mind that her biggest hit, “I Wish I Was a Punk Rocker,” longs for a time when “computers were still scary.” The upbeat track, like Thom herself, sounds youthful, but is mature and critical as she sings, “I was born too late and to a world that doesn’t care.” She’s difficult to define; lighthearted but not frivolous.

Her vocal arrangements make many tracks sound fresh. The best example is the lively, country-flavored opener, “When Horsepower Meant What It Said.” Thom claps her hands and is unafraid to hit the high notes. It’s fun but the lyrics are weighty. She sings about the downside of progress, asking, “Why am I still standing still?”

The ballads are not as unique, but they illustrate how lovely Thom’s voice is. The standout is “Superman,” a song about the trappings and loneliness of fame; Thom pleads, “Don’t want Superman/I don’t need wonderland/just want you to love me.” It’s simple, elegant and moving.

Not every song is monumental, but there are enough great tracks to make “Smile…It Confuses People” . worthwhile. Sandi Thom possesses an inherent charisma that permeates her music. Her future looks promising. Can’t wait to see what she does next.

By Jacquie Frisco Posted in Reviews