Charlotte Church - Back to Scratch Album Review
TV presenter, Opera star and pop singer - it seems like there is nothing this girl can't do. After five years, Charlotte Church returns to music; the result being a nice pop record that doesn't boast many qualities but is an easy listen. Slightly dragging to monotony, all tracks, whilst they are good pop songs, sound like they should be in the backing of adverts or popular melodramatic serials.
Back to Scratch is an attempt by Church to revive her pop roots, especially after a turbulent year. The title track is a playful and sweet single with colourful melodies that builds to a nice climax. Church claims she is going 'back to scratch, again' and this gratifying example is reminiscent of her early stuff. Sadly, this is the only standout track from the LP. We are Young follows in a Pixie Lott fashion, which whilst has a nice mid-tempo rhythm; it is simply just that, nice. Sounding like it would be used on a TV advert is not a remedy for great music.
Similarly other tracks such as Logical World and Suitcase (which both enter corny territory) fade into the background, quite literally. Don't get me wrong, they are well crafted songs, but nothing hardly stands out about them or makes them unique in any way. In a way, it is difficult to see what kind of artist Charlotte Church is attempting to be. Sounding like a conglomerate of Delta Goodrem, Kate Nash and Amy Macdonald, whilst normally would be a great mix, just don't seem to connect well. The Actors reveals the beautiful ballads Church can produce, yet it sounds like it would be more suited on stage in a musical rather than on a pop record. Maybe it is her absence from the music scene, but it really seems that Church has got herself lost in translation.
There are obvious attempts by Church to transgress across various genres on this LP. Ruby and Snow are very soulful whilst Cup of the Sun is a very twee track that has allusions to a late Dolly Parton. As the album moves on, it is honestly difficult to get through it. Tracks like Lovedrunk and Don't Think About It are very bland and generic songs that bring nothing to the record. If anything, these tracks just tend to gel into one blur of tedium and monotony. The album ends with Honestly. Church claims 'Tell me, honestly, what to do' - even in her lyrics she seems misled and lost.
There is no denying that Charlotte Church knows how to make some nice pop music, but sadly it all just comes across a bit average. It's a shame because Church exemplifies on this record the brilliant vocals that she harbours. Whether it is her lengthy absence from music or an inability to know exactly what sort of artist she wants to be; the result is a mediocre album not worth getting too excited about. It's probably best to go back to scratch again Charlotte.
2 / 5