Tracey Thorn


Tinsle and LightsBuzzin' Fly/ Strange ****

Whether she likes it or not, Tracey Thorn is the midwife to, if not the mother of, female-oriented lo-fi pop. And so, while we’re told it’s the time of the year to be jolly, here comes Thorn to puncture the bubble with a collection of mostly covers, including White Stripes’ In the Cold, Cold Night, Sufjan

Stevens’s Sister Winter, Low’s Taking Down the Tree, Ron Sexsmith’s Maybe This Christmas, and Joni Mitchell’s River. Between these and the two originals – the heartbreaking Joy (“When someone very dear calls you with the words everything’s all clear”) and a revamped Everything But the Girl song, 25th December – Thorn combines tradition with a wonderful sense of eclecticism and sentimentality and a strong dose of realism. She really is the best of the bunch, isn’t she?

Download tracks:Joy, Taking Down the Tree, Sister Winter