Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Song #335 of 9999 - Hide and Seek by Imogen Heap

Song #335 of 9999 

Title: Hide and Seek
Artist: Imogen Heap
Year: 2005
Album: Speak for Yourself

I probably picked the worst week to restart my blog since I'm conducting a show this week and I'm pretty fried by the end of the evening. But I'm determined and, while I may not have much to say, I'm going to share a new song with you every night dammit!

Tonight's song doesn't really need my help anyway. As implied by the title of the album from which it is drawn, it "speaks for itself" in a voice that is at once filled with human emotion while also being robotic and artificial. British songstress Imogen Heap (formerly of Frou Frou) feeds her a capella singing through a device called a vocoder (short for "voice encoder"), which interacts with a keyboard to create a synthesized sound that maintains and reflects the characteristics of the vocal performance. A novelty in the hands of most singers, Heap elevates the device to new heights by feeding it dense keyboard harmony and a vocal track of extreme range and articulation. It is a striking blend that creates some wonderful tension before giving way to the airy "Mmm, what you say?" hook just before the 3:00 mark. 

It's a stunning song (from an incredibly mediocre album—don't go looking for more; you'll be disappointed). Good night!

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