Pop Perfection with Imogen Heap

I like to imagine artist Imogen Heap as a magical, musical pop fairy.

This is not difficult: she wears flowing, ethereal gowns and braids feathers through her hair. Her voice is as mercurial as the wind - a whispering breeze one moment and the fury of a storm the next. And when I listen to the perfection of her music, I feel like one of J.M. Barrie's characters sprinkled with pixie dust - able to fly.

My favorite Imogen works: the collaborative Frou Frou album Details and the self-produced album Speak for Yourself, are two of the greatest pop albums of all time. Details begins with the mesmerizing opening track "Let Go," which invites listeners to, "Let go, just jump in, oh well, what are you waiting for?" And it would be a huge mistake not to experience the magic of these eleven tracks. "Must Be Dreaming" paints the landscape of love in wild euphoria; "Hear Me Out" explores the swirling emotions of a jilted lover. Her voice glides and soars like a bird in flight across a digital sky of strings and synth, a flawless combination that has led to many triple-digit "play counts" on my media player!

Speak for Yourself starts with a quiet whisper, "Distant flickering, greener scenery, this weather's bringing it all back again..." Then...BOOM! Just like the title of the opening track, "Headlock," the song grabs hold of your with inescapable force. The drums start pounding, the strings screaming, and the only thought that is able to enter your head is, "This is going to be good." Imogen Heap's most famous song, the a capella hymn "Hide and Seek" (featured on TV shows like The OC and CSI), features some of her greatest lines, "Ransom notes keep falling out your mouth, mid-sweet talk, newspaper word cut-outs..." As a whole, Speak for Yourself is less dance-oriented than Details, but be warned that involuntary toe-tapping and shower singing might occur after listening.

While I listed my personal favorite Imogen Heap projects, her entire discography is available for download, opens a new window through Freegal. All you need is your library card to get five free songs to download every week.

So to reuse her words one more time, "Just jump in...what are you waiting for?"


Editor's Note: PCPL has copies of Frou Frou's Details on CD.