Sophie Ellis-Bextor - The Song Diaries | Page 41 | The Popjustice Forum

Sophie Ellis-Bextor - The Song Diaries

Discussion in 'Pop & Justice' started by *Leon*, Oct 25, 2017.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Island

    Island Staff Member

    I don't really use Shoot from the Hip but Another Day is the highlight from it. You Get Yours is a good one, too.

    Trip the Light Fantastic is the pure pop extravaganza. It's a delightful album. The only song I don't really use is Only One.. and New Flame but they're cute. Love Is Here is so cheesy but I love it so much. She still performs The Distance Between Us at some shows.

    Sophie is definitely one of those artists where the songs are perfectly suited for her because her singing is so distinctive and you just can't imagine someone else singing her songs and pulling them off as convincingly as she does.
    Wishlight, New Flame and Robert like this.
  2. OspreyQueen

    OspreyQueen Staff Member

    My ranking of her albums would be:

    1. Make A Scene (One of my favourite pop albums of all time, genuinely not a single song on it I don't enjoy.)
    2. Wanderlust (Beautifully written, produced and sequenced, it's such a shame so many people haven't given it a chance.)
    3. Trip The Light Fantastic (A bit predictable I guess, but still really good.)
    4. Read My Lips (The singles are brilliant of course, but there's only a couple of album tracks I really care about.)
    5. Shoot From The Hip (Some of her highest highs along with some of her lowest lows. Not unenjoyable but incredibly disjointed.)
    6. Familia (Same formula as Wanderlust, but with none of the heart and soul that made it come alive. Even the cover is just a half-assed attempt to recreate that album.)
    Wishlight and Future Lover like this.
  3. I can’t find a single flaw in her first two albums, but it all gets spotty after that.
  4. Shoot from the hip: cold, calculated pop at its worst.
  5. Calculated? If anything it ticked all the boxes of how not to follow up a hugely successful album:

    Change your image? Tick
    Replace upbeat disco songs for pensive songs about your dead relationship? Tick
    Swap the synths for acoustic guitars? Tick
    Bin the tunes? Tick

    I actually like Shoot From The Hip. But Trip The Light Fantastic is far more calculated.
  6. I can never hear If I Can't Dance without thinking of that St. Trinian's scene. Mrs. Ellis-Bextor teaching us how to break into art museums.
  7. This should be pinned as the truth.
    muddleddreams and OspreyQueen like this.
  8. Starlight is her big iconic single that got away.
  9. oh, ok. i know those (probably listened them more times than i did the originals) just didn't know f9 were freemasons...
    londonrain and biffy77 like this.
  10. Oh are we ranking the albums?

    1. Trip The Light Fantastic: for me it's the quintessential pop album. Today The Sun's On Us is in my all time top10 songs and the only one I sometimes skip is New Flame.
    2. Shoot From The Hip (UK Version)
    3. Make A Scene: it includes some of her best (Bittersweet) and some of her -limited- worst.
    4. Read My Lips: iconic singles, not much more to be found.
    5. Wanderlust
    6. Familia: the only album of hers where I skip half of the songs. Starts promising and then falls apart.

    "OMG same"
    Wishlight, biffy77, New Flame and 4 others like this.
  11. I once heard I Am Not Good At Not Getting What I Want in a grocery store.

    My SEB ranking is the same as @Verandi’s (twin taste!), except that I would place theaudience #1. It’s been in my all time album top 10 for ages.

    Wild Forever F9 Remix is the only thing I use from the Familia era.
  12. I think Familia is very underappreciated. The middle stretch goes on a bit, but the good songs (the singles and "Don't Shy Away") are some of her best work.

    My personal ranking:
    1 Trip
    2 Hip
    3 Familia
    4 Scene
    5 Lips
    6 Wanderlust
    muddleddreams, AndrewX and Island like this.
  13. Island

    Island Staff Member

    I prefer Familia to Wanderlust.
  14. Team Taste!
  15. 1 Trip The Light Fantastic
    2 Shoot From The Hip
    3 Make A Scene
    4 Read My Lips
    5 Wanderlust
    6 Familia
    biffy77 and Verandi like this.
  16. I love all albums in their own right. The only one that sticks out for me, in a bad way, is Make a Scene. While it has some of her best songs (Starlight, Magic, Bittersweet and one or two others), I find it is completely let down by the Liam Howe and Greg Kurstin tracks and definitely Can’t Fight This Feeling too. It is her only album where I have to keep myself from pressing skip. It had the potential to be her crowning glory, but the whole era became so messy.
    kaushik likes this.
  17. Her first two and her last two albums are artistic works.

    People slagging off Lips as filler (except the singles) should probably read interviews between theaudience and her album. She set out to do something guitar-based. Groovejet reminded her of her love for disco music and she sort of fused that with her indie roots and her fascination for trip-hop (she was a fan of Sneaker Pimps even before she worked with Liam) and created beautiful moody electronica. Get Over You and Music Gets The Best Of Me were label choices - which was obvious considering the success of the first two singles. She made disco, not dance pop. But Polydor pushed her down that route. (It’s one of the main reasons why every time someone calls Sophie a dance-pop artist, it always bothers me.)

    It was only natural for her to rebel and ban disco on her second album. Hip is the work of an artist. She knew what she wanted to make and she made it. Everything she loved, everything she’d been exposed to as a teenager - it’s all in there. Her exposure to krautrock and new wave (Can, Neu, Blondie etc); her love for Goldfrapp, Sneaker Pimps; her passion for 90’s Britpop - you can see it all there. If it was a calculated album, she’d have happily taken the Pet Shop Boys demo and had another top 5 with it - she was a big deal back then after all.

    Trip is a beautiful collection of modern pop songs that was aimed at the radio. Sure, she may have had her way with the deep cuts on the album, but it definitely wasn’t the album she set out to make. She wanted a B-52’s inspired record - campy lyrics, jangle pop - the only ones that came close to that description are Here’s To You and Mr. Friday, both of which didn’t make the album. She was also listening to Franz Ferdinand at the time and she was inspired by their music. But anyone can easily tell that the final product was nothing like her vision for the album. It’s still a well crafted piece of commercial pop and she made it her very own. (Fun fact: Kerin worked with her during the Trip sessions. His song obviously didn’t make the final cut, but he was looking forward to the B-52’s inspired songs too).

    She wanted to do something different after Trip. Then there was the GH drama and we all know how Scene came about. It’s a nice album with some brilliant tunes, but it definitely is the weakest in her catalogue. And once again, it was not what she set out to do, but she embraced her constraints and did whatever best she could.

    Wanderlust and Familia are products of Sophie’s creative vision. She had full control over everything and there were no labels pushing her to make something they wanted. The same goes with the upcoming orchestral album. Familia, much like Hip, has everything she’s ever done, everything she likes - it sort of envelops her entire catalogue - there’s a bit of all 6 previous albums in there (yes, all 6... including theaudience).

    So I get why decided to release a GH album now. She’d basically come full circle by album 6. So whatever she sets out to do next is definitely going to be a new chapter in her career. Or even if it goes back to the sounds of any of her previous albums, it’s alright. She has nothing to prove to anyone. She makes music because she likes making music; and not because she’s obligated to do it. But she has been talking about making one more album with Ed and that it might be heavier on the electronic side - will we get a Sneaker Pimps meets Goldfrapp record - eclectic tunes, moody melodies, ambient production? We’ll just have to wait and see..
    LPT, londonrain, biffy77 and 5 others like this.
  18. The people who say "OMG I hate Familia or Wanderlust she needs to go back to her dance-pop sound!11!1!" need to accept that she wanted to try something different after doing the similar sound for 10+ years.
  19. Familia has such a strong opening with three of her best ever songs but never really goes anywhere afterwards, that being said, I think it's still a good album.
    jakeyfw, New Flame and Verandi like this.
  20. Crystallise is the secret weapon of Familia. I love it more with each listen.
    muddleddreams, New Flame and kaushik like this.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.