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Sea Sew

4 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Jan. 20 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Universal Music Canada
  • ASIN: B001KL3GZE
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #29,917 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. An Ocean and a Rock
2. Venn Diagram
3. Sea Song
4. Splishy Splashy
5. I Don't Know
6. Keep It All
7. Courting Blues
8. Pistashio
9. Teeth
10. Lille

Product Description

Debut album from the singer/songwriter, housed in a sleeve that Lisa did the needle-work for herself, The album features 10 tracks including `An Ocean And A Rock', `Venn Diagram' and the lead single, `Lille'. Musical personnel on the album includes Donagh Molloy, Tomo, Shane Fitzsimons, Lucy Wilkins, Vyvienne Long, Gavin Glass and Cathy Davey who provides backing vocals on some of the songs. Lisa has contributed guest vocals on a number of other artists' recordings, including The Frames, Mic Christopher, and Herbie Hancock. She performed on the track 'Don't Explain,' with Damien Rice on Hancock's album, Possibilities.

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By John O'loughlin on Jan. 30 2010
Format: Audio CD
Sea Sew is Hannigan's debut solo album after her split from Damien Rice. Lucky for us that they parted, or else this album might never have happened. Hanningan's vocal are superb, on disc or live (check out the videos of her on youtube for proof of this). She has a very unusual sound, breathless but warm and astoundingly feminine. The face that she has an old-fashioned grace and beauty is just a plus, in my opinion ;-) In an industry that showcases gaudy bimbos for the most part she is definitely a breath of fresh air.

There are definitely a number of stand-out tracks on the record, including (in my opinion) "Ocean and a Rock", "I don't know" (the track that seems to have really broken her out), "Keep it all", "Pistachio" and "Lille" (another hit for her). Your favorites might vary from mine, but I bet they'd include some of these same songs.

Should you get this album? If you like "real" music, great lyrics, and exceptional vocals, then yes. If you prefer mainstream pap, then it may not be for you.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Emicello on Sept. 5 2010
Format: Audio CD
J'adore cet album de Lisa: sa voix, sa musique, ses paroles...
Un disque magique à écouter en boucle!
Longue vie à sa musique!
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Format: Audio CD
Seriously, gents, it's not often you get to hear a female sing so honestly about relationships! This song, 'I Don't Know', is the fifth track, and is terrific. The rest of the songs are lilting little ditties, and this album, while not perfect, is a true artistic expression, and I think that's all you can ask for!
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By C. Preston on Aug. 24 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I was very disappointed with this CD. It is not that Lisa doesn't have a great voice because she does or even that the lyrics weren't good; they were good; not great. I didn't find the musicianship anything remarkable.

What I realized after listening to this CD is why I didn't enjoy it.....Lisa has worked previously partnering on some of Damien Rice CD's & I realized in listening to her own CD that what was missing to me was....heart, angst, expressions of the most intimate of feelings. Perhaps that is Damien's gift but she blended so beautifully with his work that I felt that her representations in his work would carry over into her own.

This CD felt passionless to me; perhaps it will be enjoyed by those that don't connect with passion, intimacy etc., or connect with music that isn't relating a particular story, struggle etc.

I would say it is equivalent to putting background music on when your having company that will neither annoy but not challenge anyone either.

Sorry to have to say it but this CD I would say is one of my biggest CD disappointments for 2009.....even for the last few years. Back to the drawing board maybe; sorry Lisa et all fans but I have to be honest about my critique.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 50 reviews
36 of 36 people found the following review helpful
Simply Gorgeous Album Feb. 3 2009
By Dan Lebryk - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Lisa Hannigan's first solo album, and what an amazingly beautiful freshman effort.

Lisa played with Damien Rice for some time, in fact Volcano is probably one of my favorite songs because she, Damien, and the cello all sounded like perfect musical instruments. It's a shame that Rice asked her to split off onto her own. She appears with him on these two Damien Rice albums O,9 - both are masterpieces when she sings.

Sea Sew is one of those delicate beautifully mixed clear albums that is just a pleasure to listen to. Lisa's voice and phrasing shows a number of influences, but she is never derivative of their music. She has a unique style that is very easy to recognize. On different tracks, I'm reminded of Jane Birkin (ex fan de sixties), Edie Brickel (shooting rubber bands at the stars), Bjork (her early work, maybe even sugar cubes days), Her Irishness comes out frequently, just enough pleasant lilt.

Her voice has a wonderful range, from whisper quiet with a the tiniest bit of rasp to clear clean beautiful full singing. Notes are always hit perfectly (no pitchiness here dog). The recording has wonderful imaging. The mix is well balanced, Lisa's voice is crystal clear backed by musical instruments at exactly the right volume.

The packaging is worth mentioning - all paper and paper board. The disc fits in a slot just inside the front cover. The 10 page stapled insert includes the musician credits, most of the song lyrics (a few are missing), and the standard thank yous at the end. The cover is a photograph of a knit and stitched piece Lisa and Frances Hannigan did.

Ocean and A Rock - beautiful violin accompanies her voice starting off with a low intimate whisper. Slowly builds through the song to include a nicely played trumpet. The volume of this song stays constant, there is none of that annoying very quiet first one minute of the song and then blarring sound at the end.

Venn Diagram - oh such a beautiful singing of something so mathematical. There is an interesting drum beat driving through this song. Lisa's ha ha ha's are, well a bit exciting.

Sea Song - The cello back drop on this song is wonderful. The tone of her voice works very well with violin and cello. This song is a bit weaker compared to the rest, a little sing songy.

Splishy Splashy - beautiful guitar opening. This song seems like it should be silly, but in fact has a melancholy tone in contrast to the words. "Have your coffee splishy splashy" imagine those words sung slightly sad, each word emphasized. It's remarkable how she can use her voice so well to make words and music sound sad (there is a xylophone made to sound like a child's toy).

I Don't Know - another track with a driving drum and trumpet. It's probably the most radio playable song of the disc. It's a sweet song.

Keep It All - has almost a Cowboy Junkies vibe to it. A standout on the disc. Driving drum beat, bass line, cello, and guitar. Where the lead singer of Cowboy Junkies always sounded like she was on Qualueds, Lisa Hannigan has all her senses and hits perfect notes. One of my more favorite cuts on this disc.

Courting Blues - the only song Lisa did not write, and my least favorite. There's a fair amount of dissonance, not unpleasant.

Pistachio - a cute song. Probably sounds the most like Bjork mixed with Jane Birkin. A few times the singing rolls off to almost speaking. It's an interesting enjoyable effect. The lyrics are just so much fun and oddly have an exciting side to them.

Teeth - Almost hate to say it this way, but it's sort of folk music meets a movie soundtrack or show tune (without all the horns and huge orchestra). The song is just fine, not a standout.

Lille - the most Irish folk song of the disc. Just a beautiful song.

Overall, this is a very solid disc. Personally I would purchase the CD for the lovely packaging. There's maybe one or two tracks that I might not download, if I were picking and choosing. A case of very well done mix, recorded lovingly, and with care.

Lisa was a standout to me on the Damien Rice albums. She demonstrates that she is not a one trick pony, or the background singer. She is a solid artist in her own right.
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
At last!!! Feb. 7 2009
By Nse Ette - Published on
Format: Audio CD
I first came across Irish Singer Songwriter Lisa Hannigan when she accompanied Damien rice on "Don't explain" from Herbie Hancock's "Possibilities" CD. Ethereal, with weeping Cello and Hancock's delicate tinkling of the ivories perfectly accentuating the pairs delicate vocals, it made me long for more and so I got Damien Rice's brilliant CDs "O" and "9", both brilliant. Lisa's vocals accompanied Rice's on quite a few tracks and people wondered what she would sound like away from his shadow.

Well, here we get to find out. "Sea Sew" is Hannigan's debut which originally came out late last year in her native Ireland. Comprising just 10 melodic but tender Folk-y songs with clever and intelligent lyrics, they sound as lovingly put together as the photo of the quilt on the CD cover.

With a spare sound (piano, cello, guitars, some tinkling/chiming glockenspiel here and there) with her hushed elfin vocals floating delicately above, every song is a standout really. I must say, her songs don't sound as bleak and melancholic as her former musical partner's. My favourites are the upbeat pair of "Sea song" and "Keep it all", the waltz-like Bluesy "Courting blues", the lovely piano-driven "Pistachio", the ethereal "Teeth" (which just builds and builds), and closing lullaby-like "Lille".

This reminds me of another stunning Folk-y CD which came out last year, "Me and Armini" by Emiliana Torrini. Much like that effort, "Sea sew"'s idiosyncratic charm is not immediately apparent but takes you over slowly but surely. Classy and beautiful!!
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Wonderful breakout album from a shooting star Nov. 26 2008
By C. Acosta - Published on
Coming off a musical breakup with the amazingly talented, Singer/Poet Damon Rice, Lisa Hannigan finally launches a full album under her own name, and the result is nothing short of amazing. Hannigan likely has the best voice of any folk singer of her generation, and she is probably the most beautiful too. For anyone who appreciates time on his or her own, or just wants to unwind while listening to an amazing CD, break out a candle and let Lisa take your hand and guide you on wonderful journey.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Amazing first album!!! May 26 2009
By J. Capaul - Published on
Format: Audio CD
I never write reviews, but I have to make an exception here. Since she is not main stream pop, she will need all the good reviews she can get - they are more the deserved! I first heard Lisa on Damien's "O" album, and instantly fell in love with her voice. I was bummed out when they broke up, and I ordered her album as soon as it came out. Before the cd got here, my wife and I got to see her perform this album live at a little place in Minneapolis (the varsity theater). There was a huge snow storm that night, and only maybe 50 people showed up (we drove 150 miles). She put on an mesmerizing performance for us. Do not hesitate to see her live, or get this cd. It's perfect for just sitting around, relaxing, and getting high.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
My heart is sewn up in this vibrant (not so) new voice... Sept. 28 2009
By Andrew Ellington - Published on
Format: Audio CD
I am a huge fan of Damien Rice. He is, without question, my favorite musical artist out there today and maybe even ever. It was on his stellar `O' that I first heard Lisa Hannigan. A few years ago, shortly after the release of Damien's `9', Lisa broke away from Damien to pursue her solo career. While it came at a inopportune time for me (right after I purchased tickets to see Damien Rice in concert, thus resulting in a Lisa'less experience) it was a smart move for Hannigan, for she certainly has the charm and the voice to succeed on her own; and she proves that here on `Sea Sew', her debut album.

I will say this right off the bat; the album is pretty close to flawless. So, you may wonder; why only four stars. The only issue I have with `Sea Sew' is a pretty big one. Nothing here, aside from one song, really POPS. Musically it is very similar to Damien's albums, but there is no `Blowers Daughter' or `Cold Water' or `Rootless Tree'. There is nothing that makes you sit back and say "wow", and you really need that. `Sea Song' is the one real standout here; but with an album filled to the brim with impeccable tracks I was expecting them to reach that `other' level they should have been aiming for.

It's a splendid album, but it's just lacking that special something for me.

And where is Damien? She really could have at least collaborated with him on ONE track!

So, I'll start with my favorites. Like I mentioned, `Sea Song' has that special something that makes it my favorite of the album. There is an edge here that is not really on the rest of the album; an almost sinister advance that entices me. `Keep it All' also has that vibe, but it is sharper, losing some of the melodic incorporations that made `Sea Song' so vibrant. The opening and closing tracks are also delightful; especially `An Ocean and a Rock', which just touches my soul with its soft embrace. `Lille', the albums closer, is perfectly simplistic. It may seem to be almost `too' simple to some, but it is within that simplicity that the song soars.

It is truly beautiful.

`Splishy Splashy' has warmth to it that I really like; something soft and tender and delicate on the ears. I love the execution of `Courting Blues'; an almost eeriness that corrupts (in a good way) the musical arrangement. The melancholy way in which `Teeth' is delivered is entrancing to say the least; and the track was one of my favorites upon my initial listen. It has fallen down a bit for me upon repeated listens, but it is still very effective. `Venn Diagram' has had the reverse effect on me, starting off very low yet rising with every listen. It has a buoyancy about it that I really enjoy. `Pistachio' is almost as delightful as the nut from which it borrows its name (no, I didn't just say that). Hannigan's sweet vocal's just swallow us whole.

`I Don't Know' reminds me of `Dogs' or `Coconut Skins'; light fare Damien Rice. It's a sweet and charming little ditty that doesn't carry the weight of her other work but it has a bounce that is sure give the listener a fun experience.

In the end `Sea Sew' is a very nice debut from a wonderfully talented artist who is sure to improve with each release. I hope that more and more people listen to and fall in love with this astonishing singer. I cannot wait for her sophomore release!

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