The Austin Chronicle

Charlotte Church

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Reviewed by Dan Oko, March 15, 2013, Music

Charlotte Church

VEVO Tv Control Room, Friday, March 15

At 27, Charlotte Church has spent nearly half her life in the UK media spotlight. The Welsh songstress might have thought she was foiling the paparazzi with her gray bouffant wig and vaguely Victorian muumuu, but there was no mistaking the voice of the classically trained former teen sensation. Church could sing "Ave Maria" or "Hallejuah" and passersby would have to sit down and shut up. For her current modus, Church uses her voice to establish a transcendent presence, her vocals occasionally looped on a series of compositions she's tracking for an independently produced series of five EPs. Though barely 200 people found their way to her performance, Church was unfussy and professional. On the second song, "I Can Dream," a Goan-style trip-hop meditation, the lyrics were virtually unintelligible, yet the turmoil operatically conveyed. Despite its Katy Perry title, single "Glitterbombed" bristled with Björk level pyrotechnical vox, but also showed a side of Church still lingering from her Celtic Woman performances. The singer came backed by a quintet featuring two drummers, which helped complete the fusion of rock and classical. If she can work out the compositional formula, Charlotte Church will join the likes of Kate Bush and Sinead O'Connor as a fierce new voice for her own generation.

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