What We Saw From The Cheap Seats review by Regina Spektor

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  • Released: May 29, 2012
  • Sound: 9
  • Lyrics: 8
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 8.7 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.7 (13 votes)
Regina Spektor: What We Saw From The Cheap Seats
1

Sound — 9
Regina has always stuck to a special type of sound that makes her music stand out. But it's never stopped her from dipping into other styles within that niche. Compare "11:11"'s "Wasteside" with "Soviet Kitsch"'s "Your Honor". Regina Spektor is undoubtedly talented, and this album is no exception. From the baroque-feel of "Oh, Marcello" to the slowed down feelings of "How" and "Firewood", Regina has managed to stay true to that unique sound that her fans have always loved. Her remake of "Ne Me Quitte Pas" gives it a bit more of an upbeat, happy feeling, without overshadowing or falling short of the original. All in all, Regina's sound is as amazing as ever. However, there were a couple times when a track or two just felt a bit lackluster, but quickly recovered itself. Outside of that, the sound is spectacular.

Lyrics — 8
Hoo boy. Regina's lyrics have always been of the interesting sort. Some make sense, and others are completely indecipherable. In "What We Saw From The Cheap Seats", we are treated to that same blend of beautiful, creative, and (at times) enigmatic lyricism. This isn't to say that the lyrics are poor - It's quite the opposite. Regina's word choice reflects her personality of fun, quirky, and creative. Some songs have parts that are in everything from French to Italian to Russian. If you remember "Apres Moi", which has a French title and Russian breakdown, then you're familiar with this. "Oh, Marcello", for example, hops between English and Italian in the same sentence, yet with enough fluidity to allow the verse to still be fitting. Few other than Spektor can lay claim to that. Then there's Regina's singing itself. It's truly a unique style! Her voice is one that cuts through the white noise of others in her genre, and her vocal techniques such as the glottal stop (which she has become rather well known for) are as impressive as her expansive vocal range. She's an artist with an audible smile in her songs, and "What We Saw From The Cheap Seats" is no exception.

Overall Impression — 9
Overall, it's a phenomenal album. It easily stacks up to the success of "Far" and "Begin To Hope". Some of my personal favourite tracks are "Firewood", "How", "Ballad Of A Politician", and "All the Rowboats". Of course, I also love "Ne Me Quitte Pas". If there's was one thing I could change, it'd be a TINY bit more... "pizazz" in one or two tracks. But an artists music is an expression of THEIR creativity, not mine. Given that, I absolutely love this album. If I woke up to find that someone had taken or scratched it, I wouldn't hesitate to replace it. This is an excellent follow up to "Far", which came out an entire 3 years ago. As long as Regina doesn't pull an Axl and keep us waiting until 2027 for the next one, I'd say she'll only get better from here.

8 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Abacus11
    Regina Spektor is amazing. If you can't tell the difference between this and "hipster" music or what's on mainstream pop radio these days then you really have no ear for music. Go ahead metal kids, blast me all you want but I'm right. PS - If you've got an open mind and like great songwriting and singing, check out her earlier stuff. I'm looking forward to checking this album out.
    some.will.seek
    [quote]iommi600 wrote: Oh my god, this is the worst bunch of hipster music I've ever heard.[/quote I disagree.. And I hate hipster music. Her voice is freaking unbelievable. Alot of singers absolutely love Regina because of her ridiculous talent and the way she actually uses it. Instead of singing an anthemic pop song.. She really uses her voice in beautiful interesting ways that pushes the boundaries of excellent singing.
    EpiExplorer
    I've given some of it a listen, and its just the music you'd expect to find in the charts. Again. Like her last album. Same old same old, moving on.
    EpiExplorer
    Abacus11 wrote: Regina Spektor is amazing. If you can't tell the difference between this and "hipster" music or what's on mainstream pop radio these days then you really have no ear for music. Go ahead metal kids, blast me all you want but I'm right. PS - If you've got an open mind and like great songwriting and singing, check out her earlier stuff. I'm looking forward to checking this album out.
    No ear for music or maybe you dont understand that some people have reasons not to like things? You're only being right in your own eyes, as much as anyone else is in their own. And this is pop as 'alternative' gets: Faux semi-cockney singing accent (which is odd considering she's russian-american), soft, yet loud and compressed vocals, a familiar, linear no-bushes-beaten pop derived album layout, mandatory piano ballads, most of it sounds like it was written for a music video of some kind, and so on. Heard it before, not interesting, certainly not as fantastical as people make it out to be.
    Dufil
    Hello everybody! I just wanted to let you all know that one day Regina Spektor and I will be marry. Don't worry, you all are invited! =D
    Xomar
    why is this on UG? Next you know we're gonna see Lil Wayne on UG