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6 Degrees Entertainment

Title - 'Where Else ...' (Cherry Red Records)
Artist - Claudia Brücken

Claudia Brücken is a German singer who fronted the synthpop groups Propaganda and Act. In 1996 she started working with OMD co-founder Paul Humphreys, first without a name, and since 2004 as Onetwo. Together they also founded the independent record label There(There). In 2013, Claudia and Paul ceased working and living together, and she has subsequently returned to pursuing her solo career.

Opening this wonderful new solo album, Where Else ... with the sultry, French-vibed 'I Want You' is a truly inspired way to bring an album to the listener. With a cinematic viewing through words, Brücken details a faded relationship in Paris like she was reading from a classic literary tale. A gentle synthpop back beat next brings us 'Nothing Good Is Ever Easy,' which is backed by the gently pop sway of 'I Lay All Night.'

The beautiful, truly delicious 'Day Is Done' is next before Brücken slides effortlessly into the renaissance-flavored, harpsichord-structured 'Walk Right In.' For my money, the best track on the album is the pop-flux of 'Nevermind,' which fairly bounces along as if being chased. Not just that, but for the fact it contains one of the most profound statements in lyrically history: "It's not unusual to be on my own, it's better than being together and alone." Amen, sister!

The second side to this album, as I call it (as it just feels like it's an old school vinyl album), gives us the lovely 'How Do I Know,' before the lush, 'Moon Song.' Brücken continues in the gentle synthpop vein with 'Letting Go,' before the album is brought to a close with the haunting 'Time To Make Changes,' and then, finally, the acoustic guitar flow of the Sirens, whose music caused the ships to crash on the rocks, 'Sweet Sound Vision.'

Reviewed by: Russell A. Trunk