I loved Caro Emerald’s debut Deleted Scenes From The Cutting Room Floor more than I expected I would. Emerald perfectly balanced that retro sultry jazz with modern pop, and I couldn’t – still can’t – listen to that album enough.
If you’re anything like me, Emerald’s debut was far more shocking than The Shocking Miss Emerald. Retro jazz infused with a modern twist is not a staple in my music collection and Deleted… was something new and exciting. I was transported back to the smoky jazz haunts of the 40’s and 50’s.
The Shocking Miss Emerald continues to take you back to those shady nightclubs, where sexy meant classy and smoking was allowed inside. Emerald’s second album isn’t shocking, it’s exactly what fans would expect from her, but I personally wouldn’t have it any other way. Emerald has once again created a time machine within 13 jazz/pop tracks, with a hint of tango and swing. Close your eyes while listening to this record, and you’ll swear you’re in a Paris jazz club of the 50’s – especially when listening to the morose, yet romantic highlight track “Black Valentine.”
“My Two Cents” is the only track with a fairly modern vibe, as Emerald’s vocals have an electronic sound layered on a modern dance feel, rather than that retro swing. But hey, a little variety is hardly a bad thing.
Emerald sings of tales of new love (Completely), the troubles of choosing between two men (Tangled Up), and the need to get away (Pack Up The Louie). We heard these themes in her debut, but there is diversity here. In a throwback to the life of a woman in the 50’s “Come Back As A Man” tells the story of a woman needing to dress up as a man in order to be heard, while “Liquid Lunch” is simply a fun track about drinking too much with the girls at lunch.
The Shocking Miss Emerald is a worthy follow up to the brilliant debut Deleted Scenes From The Cutting Room Floor. Emerald is already a household name in the Netherlands, and she is well on her way to conquering the world.