Wednesday, November 30, 2011


Florence + The Machine, "What the Water Gave Me" Live

Florence finally proves, once and for all, beyond the shadow of a doubt, haters be damned, that she can actually, truly, for-real for-real, sing. Not that there was ever any question.

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Saw her last summer in Berkeley, lady can really belt it out.


Happy to see she's really embracing the Virginia Woolf thing.

:Cinnamon Girl:

What, did haters think that a mostly awkward androgynous super tall red head got famous as a vocalist but can't sing?


@.Lauren. She looked absolutely gorgeous on SNL. Oh to be awkward, a super tall, androgynous (really?) red head with porcelain skin.. and with those pipes. alas, I'm stumpy, curvy, and freckled.


Annie Lennox, Florence Welch, and Elly Jackson for the super-tall, andro-ginger hat trick.

Also possibly one of the most difficult F/M/K setups ever.

:Cinnamon Girl:

@ radiofutura I mean, I think she is pretty. But she is hardly the typical female vocalist who also happens to look like a conventionally pretty model. Guess I should've clarified I have A Thing for androgyny and gingers...


@.Lauren. I hate to quibble and I believe ultimately we agree, she's more the *fashion* model type. Girlfriend can wear clothes so well.. the way she looked in the black number on SNL was just otherworldly and elegant, like an Erte.

:Cinnamon Girl:

@ radiofutura Yes, we agree. No quibbles!


I'm seeing Florence + The Machine live next Thursday.
Pretty excited about it!

Can I also say that I was SHOCKED when I realized Florence Welch is my age?! For some reason I just always assumed she was a lot older?

oh, disaster

@emilylouise The only thing Florence and LeBron James have in common is that I assumed they were much older than me when in fact they're both a year or two younger. And they also make me feel unaccomplished.


I saw her in Boston during her tour for Lungs. They turned the mic down really, really low because her singing voice is SO powerful. When she spoke with the audience between songs, you could barely hear her because her speaking voice was so soft by comparison. Lady is the real deal. No auto-tune for Ms. Flo.

The funny thing is, my partner bought me the tickets for my birthday, and he came with me. He fell in love with her music after that show. He bought her new album before I had a chance to! I usually think of Florence + the Machine as in the relm of arty girl music, but I'll be damned if my (actually pretty macho) manfriend doesn't just love it.


Is there some sort of widespread Florence Welch backlash out there? I've never heard of it, but I'm open to the possibility that I just happen to only rotate in Internet circles where she's universally praised and fawned over.


@boyofdestiny There are two separate backlashes. There's the general-public backlash, which is a conflation of her being at the intersection of the following: a) mainstream and therefore "uncool" pop artists; b) artists who can plausibly fit into the "OMG indie is adult contemporary!" crapshow a month or so ago; c) female artists who can plausibly be pigeonholed, fairly or not, as "quirky" or "Kate Bush ripoffs." That's the backlash most people are familiar with.

The other backlash is much more recent and has to do with the fact that her video for "No Light, No Light" is racist as fuck.


@katherine Thanks! I really was unaware.

Nina B.@twitter

@boyofdestiny Love Florence! She's great! But katherine is right -- the video for "No Light, No Light" is pretty racist. Racialicious has a great article about that if you want to learn more!


@katherine There was also some nonsense about how people thought she sounded bad/out of tune on SNL. To which I would say (1) no she didn't and (2) everyone sounds kind of off on SNL because they have had the worst acoustics in the known universe for the last 30 years. Also, I think she sounds more like Beth Orton than Kate Bush but there is room enough for all of them in AmazingBritishFemaleSingerTopia.

Faintly Macabre

@katherine Oh. That's really disappointing. I love her music but haven't watched any of her music videos, so I had no idea. Although the fact that's she's all bff with Blake Lively did make me wonder exactly how cool she really was...


@katherine i played dog days for my mother when lungs came out, and she was like, :oh, this is like that other music you like! klempf! (clannad): RAGE


@Faintly Macabre it made more sense to me when i read a BI that implies blake lively is a lesbian who loves powerful women. eh??


@Techmo the only band to ever soud good on snl was the ting tings. swear! everyone else sounds like they are singing in a box without their mic plugged in.


@LeafySeaDragon Jessie J KILLED IT on SNL. Like...proved that it could be done properly.

Gaelic for Failure

The first time I saw Florence sing live (well, by "saw" I mean "watched on TV") was when she performed at the Oscars, immediately followed by Gwyneth Paltrow singing that song from Country Strong. Sucked to be Gwyneth at that moment.


@Gaelic for Failure That Oscars performance was a knockout.


Have seen her live at a festival, it was pissing rain and cold, and she pranced about in bare feet and tried to get us all to sing the rain away.

Nate Jones@twitter

It's not a Florence performance without some spindly-wrist dancing. Glad she threw that in there at the end!


@Nate Jones@twitter she is at her adorble best in the my boy builds coffins video, her doodling hands are beyond cute.


I guess her music doesn't really do it for me, is the best response I can give to why I don't like the band that much. But good God, so much respect every time she sings. I'm covered in goosebumps and serious jealousy I was born with a voice so naturally off-key.

Does anyone else have a weird love for deep-ish-voiced female singers? It gets me going for real for real.


@itiresias if you can find them on youtube, there are some great joplin videos before she was famous where she is singing on key. the growly/rough/off key thing is an affectation.


I totally get, and agree with, all of the controversy regarding race in her videos. But really, there's any disagreement over whether she can SING? Are you serious?


She has a beautiful voice even when she's not even SINGING.


She makes singing look soooo easy! I would be drenched in sweat, covered in boils, and standing alone in the room by the end of it.

Hannah Ballou@facebook

I love the way oblivious people walking past outside the studio, who are all like "No, there's no soul haunting wail going on in the vicinity that I'm aware of."


I love the new album. Very rarely does something this good come around. Also cannot wait for the new Mazzy Star album..


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