Thursday, November 08, 2007

Deborah Harry - Necessary Evil

Deborah Harry, the voice of Blondie, has returned with, her first new solo album in 14 years, Necessary Evil. Most notable is that this disc hold 17 tracks that are mostly written by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member. This would have been a double-album more than 14 years ago.

One can't help but be sucked in by the tantalizing first track/first single, "Two Times Blue." But don't expect to hear 16 similar songs. Harry throws some absolutely beautiful ballads at you with "If I Had You," "Needless To Say," "What Is Love" and the etheric "Paradise." "Deep End" is an outstanding track that merges a great melody with layers of tangible textures reminiscent of Siouxsie & The Banshees. The stark drum machine and handclaps lead one to believe that there isn't much to the beginning of "Love With A Vengeance" but the rhythm builds in the process adding a haunting little bass hook creating a brooding dance song. The fun really surfaces on the tracks "You're Too Hot" and "Dirty And Deep" as they ooze sensuality and frustration. Sure, there are other similar moments on "Charm Alarm" and "School For Scandal" that hint to the darker edge of sexuality but bringing back the chorus from "You're Too Hot" into the following song "Dirty And Deep" is brilliant and makes the listener question if it really is two songs. "Jen Jen" was written by Chris Stein with all instruments performed by him. The song's aboriginal groove could seem out of place but on this diverse collection it adds another layer while allowing the following track, "Naked Eye," to shine.

The production values on this album are impressive and Necessary Evil is exactly what the title says for fans and dance music aficionados. Harry delivers on so many levels here and reaffirms her diva status.

4.5 out of 5

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