Tracey Thorn Out of the Woods

Tracey Thorn Out of the Woods
Tracey Thorne should ready herself for a panoply of "Everything But The Boy” headlines as the ex-Everything But the Girl chanteuse makes her first solo foray in 25 years. Of course, nobody ever cared about that initial record but that shouldn’t be the case for her follow-up. EBTG fans need not fret, though her music/life partner Ben Watt stayed home to take care of their kids (oh, and to run his dance label and DJ career), the new album is very much rooted in the EBTG formula, it’s just that producers like Ewan Pearson are now crafting the slow-mo, string-laden house music that Thorne so loves to croon over. While some tracks, like folk ballad "Here it Comes Again,” eschew electronics altogether, most feature icy beats ranging from down tempo (her requiem for bullied gay teens, "A-Z”) to mid-tempo (the almost-dance floor-ready album closer "Raise The Roof”). But really, it doesn’t matter who is backing her up. Thorne’s torch singing style and inimitable voice exude such mellow melancholy that even when she’s cooing about raising her "hands up to the ceiling” all you want to do is lie down on the couch. (Virgin/EMI)