Emiliana Torrini: Iceland Goes Pop

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Tuesday's Pick

  • Song: "Jungle Drums"
  • Artist: Emiliana Torrini
  • CD: Me and Armini
  • Genre: Pop-Rock
Emiliana Torrini 300

In the funky "Jungle Drums," Emiliana Torrini channels Regina Spektor at her most adorable. courtesy of Emiliana Torrini hide caption

toggle caption courtesy of Emiliana Torrini

Emiliana Torrini's lovely voice last received widespread attention during the end credits of 2002's The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, which featured the Icelandic musician performing "Gollum's Song." If the intense, dreamlike sound saturating that track brought to mind another spunky singer from the same island, that's probably no accident: Torrini reportedly got the Lord of the Rings gig only because Bjork was pregnant.

Torrini has a bit more pop appeal than her more avant-garde counterpart, though, and her ambitious new album Me and Armini shows off her flair for electronic music and even folk-rock. Known for incorporating unusual instruments — from a Wurlitzer to a glockenspiel — Torrini is also adept at using her voice for rhythmic accompaniment, a talent she puts to use in the funky "Jungle Drums." Easily the album's most danceable track, the song channels Regina Spektor at her most adorable, with Torrini's charming lilt laid over intense drums and punctuated by a sharp electric bass line.

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