Anneke van Giersbergen - Drive

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Ex-The Gathering singer Anneke Van Giersbergen has had something of a career resurgence in the last few years. Perhaps propelled by her high profile work with Devin Townsend, last year's Everything Is Changing was a surprising success and saw the singer really find her voice after stumbling attempts under the Aqua de Annique moniker. Now on InsideOut records (a subsidiary of Century Media – fans of The Gathering will appreciate the irony), Drive seems to be running with this success. The formula that made Everything Is Changing work hasn't changed too much – Anneke's music has far more in common with Jimmy Eat World than it'll ever have with her more progressive labelmates, but that is definitely by design. Drive is more focused on power-pop than its predecessor, with songs like She, Drive and The Best Is Yet To Come being examples of structurally simple but highly enjoyable guitar pop. There's a thankfully slender amount of ballads – My Mother, whilst assuredly sincere, is just a bit too saccharine for most, so it's good that such songs are kept to a minimum. Whilst this all sounds like a weird fit for a progressive label, consider Anneke Van Giersbergen's recent successes on Addicted and Epicloud, two Devin Townsend albums on InsideOut defined by their big, power-pop songs and Anneke's unique and powerful voice. In those albums a formula became very apparent, and that formula shines through on Drive, even if the guitars are toned down. It isn't progressive, and it's barely rock, but it is everything guitar-pop should be.

Written by James Donovan
More: 2013, Albums, Quick.Play Reviews, Rock,

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