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For a certain strain of British pop fan, there’s a small part of their heart that yearns for a reunion of Everything But The Girl, the husband and wife duo that had success with pop favorites like “Missing” and “Wrong.” The couple—Tracey Thorn and Ben Watt—are still together, mind you; they just have other agendas like writing books and producing albums of their own.
What eases the minds of their fans is how great these solo efforts have been. That’s particularly the case with Thorn. She’s released only a handful of LPs since EBTG went on an extended hiatus in 2000, but each one has been better than the last. Which should have you itching within for the forthcoming release of Record, her fifth solo album (out March 2nd on Merge Records). Produced with Ewan Pearson, the record looks back to the electronic pop that marked the end of her work with Watt. Gone, though, is the vulnerability and head-shaking dismay of songs like “Oh, The Divorces!” and “Mirrorball,” replaced by a heat and strength that is unabashedly feminist and joyous.
For the most crystalline proof of this, check out “Sister,” the latest single from Record, a glittering slow disco number that fuses Thorn’s vocals with the background work of Corinne Bailey Rae and carries a defiant message. Yes, she sings, she fights like a girl. Which is the very reason you shouldn’t fuck with her.