With a voice as fabulously stentorian as hers, it would be so easy for Calvi's gothic pop bombast to balloon into melodrama. But she's too smart and stylish for that, and there's nothing hammy about this, her exquisitely sweet and savage second record. Each song is coloured with a knowing intelligence and it all comes from her voice. On Piece by Piece, for example, she climbs to whispered, breathy heights, then falls to croon sweet nothings; while the gorgeously stormy and guitar-squalling Love of My Life has her roiling and panting like Karen O.
Anna Calvi: One Breath – review
Hermione writes for the Observer New Review section on books, music, theatre and feminism.