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MusicLover_2007

Reg's true voice

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pilingandtwisting, you just posted your 666'th post!

Posts: 666 | Location: Southern California, USA | Registered: 12 October 2006

spooky...

don't kill me for saying what i'm about to say! i love regina, and i don't decidedly prefer any one album over another, or "early reg" over "recent reg". What i'm about to say is totally peronal speculation-NOT opinion!!

ok, here goes: Back in 11:11 days, i think Reg hit her vocal climax. you can hear a freedom in her vocals on 11:11 and the '99 tape that seems to have.... adjusted itself over the years. Now, she pulls off all kinds of great stuff on the new album, and live shows, but i think that she had the greatest vocal liberty when she was younger.

idk that regina is still interrested in writing songs that are almost totally nonsensical, and silly (and feature vocals to match), because far features exclusively focused songs-there's a definite thread running through each piece, and you're able to dicipher every song if need be. and some are even self-explanitory. So i agree with pilingandtwisting: it's harder to sing along with the old stuff because she was /all over the place/. And sure, that takes some getting used to for the listener, but it's really something unique that you learn to love about her music. In more recent years, her songs are deeper, her vocals seem to have a better idea of what they're about, and the arrangements are great. I love both reginas equally, but have a greater appreciation for the vocals of the younger one.

or maybe she's toning it down to appeal to more people.. Although i think the little girl voice is put on. just being honest. it's certainly recognizable, but i think the more laid-back, alto-sounding vocals/speech sound more natural for her. Maybe i'm crazy, though! after all, i'm running on 4 hours of sleep here.

i remember an interview where Reg said that she did all those wild noises because she lacked the studio to make them for her. so to keep the songs interresting, she had to fill in those gaps (evidence by the recording of "All the Rowboats" where she stops the sound effects at the beginning to say, "i hear so much more stuff in my head than you guys hear right now.") in the interview, she basically said that, now that she's in studio, she can relax and let the equipment do its job, and let her do hers. Early on in her career, she was putting in more effort at communicating the overall sound she wanted. but now she's focusing on, well, being a singer! i'm just not used to the idea of regina making minimal noises (does this mean that we've seen the end of her faux-trumpet days, as she'll run out of songs practiced without the intent of being taken into the studio??)... so yeah. i love her voice, no matter the year, album, or season. i love her songs, whether they're offensive to my religion, make no sense to me, or complete my life. As long as Regina Spektor is content to sing, i am content to listen and support. She's brilliant in so many ways...

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Her voice has changed a lot, but I think she can sing the old way if she wanted to. She's grown so much vocally and stylistically, however, that I don't think we'll ever hear much of her old way of singing in future releases. Notice how she kept the glottal stop to a bare minimum on Far? I think it's on Dance Anthem only.

In her Voxpop interview she stated that when she was signed to a label, she began to adopt a more professional approach to making music, as is expected of serious artists. Professionalism = adopting a more refined style.

Her voice does sound a bit "affected" on 11:11, Songs, and the demo tape...almost as if she's trying to imitate those famous jazz singers she used to listen to. That jazz influence is entirely gone from her current work.

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quote:
Originally posted by makingstuffup:

Her voice does sound a bit "affected" on 11:11, Songs, and the demo tape...almost as if she's trying to imitate those famous jazz singers she used to listen to. That jazz influence is entirely gone from her current work.

She IS trying to imitate jazz singers and others on the earlier recordings. She said so herself in the interview in that french magazine. And then she got tired of singing with an impersonal voice, so she went to some lady and took some courses. And got to know what her OWN voice sounded like. I translated some of the interview here btw.

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I don't agree that 11:11 was her vocal peak- I think her voice sounds better on Soviet Kitsch and Begin to Hope. There are a lot of (IMO) awkward chest/head transitions on 11:11 that don't quite work. I'm not saying it sounds bad, it just sounds as though she needed some instruction so as not to harm her voice. And some of the stuff she did live in 2003-2004 is actually bad for your voice. (Forcing a vibrato with the throat and not the diaphragm, for one.)

So anyway, even though a lot of people complain that her voice sounds 'tame' on far- I think her voice sounds better than ever. I know some of the songs have a more subdued vocal performance- Laughing With, Blue Lips, The Wallet- but then there's the unrestrained Human of the Year to balance it all out.

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I will always love regina. No matter what she does. But frankly I agree that she lost a lot of her emotion on far. I was listening to all the old recordings of those songs recently and remembering why I fell in love with this woman. She used to have so much raw emotion in her voice. The kind that makes you cry, even when you don't understand what the lyrics mean exactly, and then laugh out loud all in the same song. Far is a really good pop album, but also really lacks the maturing playfulness of 11:11, the enchanting poignancy of Songs, and the charmingly girlish yet flowing and heart-wrenching Soviet Kitsch. If nothing else, Far also really lacks the experimental diversity of the others. All of the songs are produced to the point of being stylistically uniform.

But I still love it so much. And I have a lot of hope that someday regina will totally blow us away again. She just seems to be that kind of person. Smiler

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quote:
Originally posted by Crispy Crispy Benjamin Franklin:

If nothing else, Far also really lacks the experimental diversity of the others. All of the songs are produced to the point of being stylistically uniform.

In a way that's the point... Not the uniformity from one song to the next, but the... definitiveness of each recording. The emotion is all still there, just in a way that's perhaps less jarring (translating into the ability to be listened to countless times.) Hmm what I'm trying to say isn't coming out exactly right...

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No, I get you. I don't disagree that they're easier to listen to. I just don't think the beauty of her best music is it's smoothness. I think, in fact, the reason her other music is so good is BECAUSE it's jarring, it pulls the emotions out of you rather than presents them to you on a platter. But really, she has to make a living, and not many people want to take the time to let the more jarring material settle in. Plus she seems to be really happy now. And that makes me happy. Smiler I do think it's so cool that she can appeal to such a wide audience now. The more people who hear the good news, the better. Smiler

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