Emmy the Great – Virtue

January 01, 1970

Harbour Records)





It’s quite a bold statement to call oneself “The Great,”
(usually reserved for critics or those jealous types to make the important
first move), but in the case of Emma-Lee Moss, we can’t really argue. Like the
many British duchesses bearing her suffix, 27-year-old Emmy the Great offers
royal fairy tales of love, lust and world affirmations that would even impress
Jane Austen. Her latest album Virtue,
released last month on indie UK
label Close Harbour Records, came at a time when Moss’ former fiancée ended
their relationship as he was converting to Christianity and, as such, the
songwriter turned to books of theology for understanding and ultimately


Emmy has since rebounded with Ash frontman Tim Wheeler, a
union that has offered its own unique collaborations if not new fodder for her
next album. But on her solo second release Virtue,
Emmy showcases the best of hers with impeccable scribing and a haunting voice that
could rival her former Lightspeed Champion co-mate Florence Welch.


Songs like “Dinosaur Sex,” genius if not just for the title,
tiptoes around a proverbial Pandora’s box of evolutionary themes with lush
string arrangements and Moss’ innocent not a girl, not yet a woman vocal
beauty. The magical mystery tour continues with the hyper choir number “A
Woman, A Woman, A Century of Sleep,” before the whimsical secret garden of
first single “Iris.” Later, “Sylvia” offers a more upbeat drum-guitar play around
Emmy’s cooing. While a large chunk of the album can droll on in lowly neo folk
cadences, Emmy’s vocal strength and writing prowess save the album from
lullabies to one of Virtue.


“Dinosaur Sex,” “Paper Glow (In the Afterglow of Rapture),” “Sylvia” SELENA

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