Welsh songwriter Duffy has had a great start to her career with her debut album being the best-selling album in the UK in 2008 and becoming the first Welsh female-singer to top the UK singles Chart in 25 years. After a lengthy absence, Duffy returns now with her sophomore offering, Endlessly. The result, whilst the short ten track listing may disappoint, is a fun and attractive addition to her portfolio.
The LP kicks off with My Boy, sparking off with an applause; and rightfully so. This track oozes class and combines a traditional and dated sound with a modern twist; hence representing exactly what we are to expect from the rest of the album. Building to a stunning climax, the applauded backing that is adopted is lawfully deserved. Similarly, the dated Too hurt to Dance sounds like it would appear in a leavers ball in the 1940s with war veterans saying goodbye to their loved ones. Beautiful and charming are words to describe this track, but at times the production seems a bit uninspired, whilst it can get a bit tiring by its end. Likewise, the album, can at times, fall into the trap of being too sedated. The title track, whilst gorgeously produced, doesn't seem to have that spark that Duffy captivated us with when she first appeared on the music scene, or Breath Away hardly does anything to take our breath away. There is no denying that Duffy is certainly doing what she does best, but it all comes across a bit numb, without any attempts to take a risk with her sound. At times, it even seems that she is simply trying to re-create her previous success; Don't forsake Me's verses, for example, paint too much of a resemblance to her previous smash-hit Warwick Avenue.
Luckily, Duffy returns with a vengeance on some tracks. Keeping my Baby is striking and captivating song that stuns the senses, whilst Lovestruck is a haunting creation, where it's tragic undertones fit Duffy's voice perfectly. Duffy's vocals do have to be commended on this LP. Well Well Well, a fun and bouncy offering, aligns her smooth abilities to an early Dolly Parton; one of which haunts us to the very end of the track.
This album is decent and respectable, but that is it really. One can't deny Duffy's abilities to produce classic tracks that remain imprinted onto the psyche, but it is a real shame that she has not attempted to diverge on this new album. The result is an offering that is a balance between the striking and the sedate; this being even more of a shame with the short track-listing. Sincere it is, but memorable it may not be.
2 / 5