Everything about Andreya Triana’s 'Life In Colour' screams of the title. The cover about as colourful as it can be without being a cartoon and covered in layers of production, with influences taken from afro-punk, country and modern pop.
The result is an album that is highly familiar, finger clicking, and - at points! - “booty popping” collection of summery joy. The tone is set from the very start with 'Woman' - a great big grin, an ode to individuality and the power in femininity – you can rule like a queen, like a superhero – but one that maybe flies a little too close to Laura Mvula’s 'Phenomenal Woman'.
Clearly Triana had a lot of fun making this record and there is lots thrown into the production, so it can actually be difficult to work out where the song really is. And though it might not be for everyone, the country influences were a welcome surprise.
Weirdly, the whole mix could probably do with a little more life and if we’re being really harsh the album might not sound authentic and maybe a little cartoonish for music connoisseurs in the first half, but does this matter? This album is not designed to be a Tom Waits or Nick Cave compendium, but FUN.
'Life In Colour' will delight any long term Triana fan. This is an album designed to cater to a more mainstream taste, and though Andreya Triana has been around for a long time, hasn’t really threatened yet due to the slight off beat nature of her previous collections.
Listening back to her other albums, you really get a sense of the progression in her confidence as a songwriter and performer. 'Giants' and 'Lost Where I Belong' are both albums worth exploring, but often meander into odd musical cul-de-sacs and feel a little too soulful and thoughtful to ever threaten repeated radio play.
'Life In Colour' is 11 songs with a great big injection of energy, that is designed to go and find a new audience. Seeing her support GoGo Penguin at the Albert Hall at the tail end of last year there was something different about her too – a calmness on stage that allowed her vocals to take centre stage more than in previous performances and one that she seemed to enjoy performing a lot more.
'Life In Colour', is not the most thoughtful album, but it is comforting and made a difficult week bearable.
As Triana says in the very final lyrics on the album: It’s gonna be alright.
And I believe her.
Words: Christopher Spring
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