Music Review: Antonio by Louise Aubrie
Antonio, the fifth studio album by British songstress Louise Aubrie, is dropping tomorrow (October 15th) and we should all be very excited. Featuring ten, indie pop-rock tracks that are super chill, Antonio evokes comparison to bands from decades prior. From Morrisey’s, The Cranberries’ to PJ Harvey’s music catalogue, Aubrie is able to channel them all, while still having a sound that is distinctly her own.
Perhaps the similarities between her work and the works of those it echoes has to do with who, exactly, helped her make the record. According to the official press release, the musician recruited a number of world class artists to collaborate on the album, including her mentor Boz Boorer who, unsurprisingly, worked as Morrissey’s musical director and co-writer. On Antonio, however, he plays guitars, keys, and percussion.
The album was produced by Adam Ant’s drummer and musical director Andy Woodard; mixed by Ken Sluiter, who also worked with Morrissey and Red Hot Chili Peppers; and mastered by Dave Collins, famed for collaborating with Jane’s Addiction, No Doubt, and Weezer. It also features the musical talents of Roger Joseph Manning Jr and Edu Bisogno on guest keys, David Ruffy on drums, as well as Rob Ritchie and Frank Horovitch on guitars.
It’s hard to pinpoint any one influence, rather you get a sense of Aubrie’s eclectic taste in music. She seems to be comfortable with rock, electronic music, pop, dance music, and even elements of R&B. But she is also someone who seamlessly blends her influences. Though I can hear Morrissey loud and clear on a number of songs, I also hear a bit of Heartless Bastards, Garbage, and even Sinead O’Conner.
The cover art for Antonio is an homage to Actually (1987), the second album by British synth-pop duo The Pet Shop Boys, which also features ten songs. Indeed, there are hints of synth pop evident throughout the album. But it doesn’t quite fit into the category in full. Her music videos, too, are fairly simple and nostalgic, bringing to mind the early days of MTV, when it was enough to watch a performer unleash their magic on stage, minus the theatrics.
According to the press release, the album’s title was inspired by the line “Même si on m'appelle Antonio,” from Jacques Brel’s song “La Chanson De Jacky,” a brilliant song about fleeing fame and the aftermath of glory. Being one of Aubrie’s favorite songs, she “created a vision of who Antonio might be: an aging European lothario going round the clubs.” Though “a lot of the songs were inspired by that image,” she doesn’t actually know any Antonio’s in the real world!”
I can honestly say that the album is now part of my phone’s music library, as I will be listening to it for the foreseeable future. I hope you do the same. Check out more from the talented artist on Facebook, Spotify, Bandcamp, SoundCloud, and YouTube.
Note* Music provided for objective review by our partners.