26 Songs, 1 Hour 37 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

For a work so heavily reliant upon synthesizers and other unnatural tones, Ellipse sounds surprisingly organic. This is mostly thanks to Imogen Heap’s delicately emotive voice, which she loops and processes into various forms ranging from the scat singing of “Earth” to the bubbly bounce of “Swoon” to the ethereal atmospherics of “Between Sheets” and “Half Life.” Her interesting song structures and the multiple layers of odd electronica give her tunes their rich textures, especially on such standouts as “First Train Home,” “Aha,” and “Canvas.” Not all of the songs on the album are so sonically dense; Heap also offers the relatively minimalist “2-1,” with its slow build and pleasant use of strings, as well as the spare piano instrumental “The Fire.” Ellipse is the third release from the former Frou Frou member and it’s a charming and intriguing patchwork of sounds. This deluxe version includes instrumental versions of each song.

EDITORS’ NOTES

For a work so heavily reliant upon synthesizers and other unnatural tones, Ellipse sounds surprisingly organic. This is mostly thanks to Imogen Heap’s delicately emotive voice, which she loops and processes into various forms ranging from the scat singing of “Earth” to the bubbly bounce of “Swoon” to the ethereal atmospherics of “Between Sheets” and “Half Life.” Her interesting song structures and the multiple layers of odd electronica give her tunes their rich textures, especially on such standouts as “First Train Home,” “Aha,” and “Canvas.” Not all of the songs on the album are so sonically dense; Heap also offers the relatively minimalist “2-1,” with its slow build and pleasant use of strings, as well as the spare piano instrumental “The Fire.” Ellipse is the third release from the former Frou Frou member and it’s a charming and intriguing patchwork of sounds. This deluxe version includes instrumental versions of each song.

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Ratings and Reviews

4.7 out of 5
1.1K Ratings

1.1K Ratings

ArcadiaStudios ,

Inventive, inspiring...brilliant

Heap's songwriting sensibilities and production choices consistently surprise and delight me, and here she takes the next step forward in her evolving musical journey. While some songs bear similarities to previous album cuts, Ellipse is not a rehash but a deeper, more mature album that inspires, entertains, and even challenges listeners to really really *listen*. To the fabulous, meticulous production but also to lyrics that are deeply personal, poetically conversational, and always relatable. There are few moments of pure rock-out joy -- which helped to make "I Megaphone" such a distinctive album for Heap -- but when they come, they are well-placed seasoning in a collection that ranges from the rollicking (is it in 12/8?) a cappella "Earth" to the slinky "Swoon" and the bouncy -- often hilarious, yet spot-on honest -- "Bad Body Double." And although known for her inventive use of synths, circuit-bent toys, and Pro Tools, Heap never loses a grip on her deeply personal approach, integrating organic sounds that actually have meaning to her (the sound of the burning of a specific piece of wood in the instrumental "The Fire," for example). We may not always know the stories behind the connections, but we can't help but relish their impact.

lrnrox ,

i love this woman

shes a genius. buy the album.

315thomas ,

meh...

i am one of the many imogen heap fans who has been anxiously awaiting the release of ellipse. well, it's finally here, and to be honest... i'm a bit disappointed. i don't think ellipse can hold a candle to speak for yourself, or frou frou's details... both of which i would give at least a 4.5.

for me, ellipse is lacking the honesty and emotional connection i have felt with her other albums... quite possibly a casualty of over production. i actually find some of the tracks to be somewhat annoying (earth, the bridge of swoon... an otherwise great song) and the lyrics uninspired and immature (bad body double, aha!).

still, a good listen with a few standout tracks - first train home, tidal, and between sheets being my favorite. if i could give a piece of advice to imogen for her next effort... don't try so hard. just follow your heart and it will be brilliant.

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