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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2009 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

Distinctions Sélection Disques de l'année Les Inrocks - Sélection du Mercury Prize
Precocious Brit Florence Welch fired a bullet into the head of the U.K. music scene in 2008 with the single "Kiss with a Fist," a punk-infused, perfectly juvenile summer anthem that had critics wiping the names Lily Allen, Amy Winehouse, and Kate Nash from their vocabularies and replacing them with Florence + the Machine. While the comparisons were apt at the time, "Kiss with a Fist" turned out to be a red herring in the wake of the release of Lungs, one of the most musically mature and emotionally mesmerizing albums of 2009. With an arsenal of weaponry that included the daring musicality of Kate Bush, the fearless delivery of Sinéad O'Connor, and the dark, unhinged vulnerability of Fiona Apple, the London native crafted a debut that not only lived up to the machine-gun spray of buzz that heralded her arrival, but easily surpassed it. Like Kate Bush, Welch has little interest (for the most part) in traditional pop structures, and her songs are at their best when they see something sparkle in the woods and veer off of the main trail in pursuit. "Kiss with a Fist," as good as it is, pales in comparison to standout cuts like "Dog Days Are Over," "Hurricane Drunk," "Drumming Song," "Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)," and "Cosmic Love," all of which are anchored to the earth by Welch's knockout voice, a truly impressive and intuitive trio of producers, and a backing band that sounds as intimate with the material as its creator. [Lungs was also released in a Deluxe Edition that included Lungs: The B-Sides, a bonus disc featuring studio tracks like “Swimming,” “Falling,” and “Heavy in Your Arms,” the latter of which appeared on the soundtrack for Twilight Saga: Eclipse, as well as live cuts (“You've Got the Dirtee Love"), demos (“Ghosts”), and remixes (the "Yeasayer Remix" of “Dog Days Are Over").] ~ James Christopher Monger
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Alternative & Indie - Released June 29, 2018 | Virgin EMI

The story started ten years ago for Florence + The Machine with the single Kiss with a Fist that revealed a certain feminism and a strong personality. For her fourth album High as Hope, the English singer steps into the big league with a unique pop that borrows from rock as well as baroque arrangements. She produced this latest creation herself, with the support from Emile Haynie who has produced the likes of Bruno Mars, Eminem and Kid Cudi. Needless to say, Florence Welch bet on the right horse! Her extraordinary voice reaches new heights on High As Hope. She effortlessly navigates between melancholy and reveries. She alternates between sweet lyric vocalizations and disturbing throat cries! A piano sounds the death knell on Big God, then a whole orchestra comes to life on No Choir. With the strings, keyboards and two talented guests, Sampha and The xx’s Jamie xx, the intensity is at its height. Welch uses her music to create a wild and fantastic world, in which the listeners can truly lose themselves. Throughout the album’s ten tracks, she deals with a general theme about her relationship to art and the voids it filled in her life. Voids created by her dyslexia, anorexia, as well as her addictive personality and disturbed sexuality. Hypersensitive, Florence manages to give birth to a tough and strong creation charged with emotions, and affirms her dual character, both vulnerable and dominant. © Anna Coluthe/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released June 1, 2015 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2012 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

There’s a point just past the halfway mark on “Shake It Out,” the rousing first single from Florence + the Machine's second studio release, when the swelling guitars, organs, and strings, staccato percussion, and Florence Welch's air-raid siren of a voice lock up in a herculean battle over which one is going to launch itself into the stratosphere first. It’s a contest that plays out at least once on each of Ceremonials' immaculately produced 12 tracks. Such carefully calculated moments of rhapsody would dissolve into redundant treacle in less capable hands, but Welch does emotional bombast better than any of her contemporaries, and when she wails into the black abyss above, the listener can’t help but return the call. Bigger and bolder than 2009’s excellent Lungs, Ceremonials rolls in like fog over the Thames, doling out a heavy-handed mix of Brit-pop-infused neo-soul anthems and lush, movie trailer-ready ballads that fuse the bluesy, electro-despair of Adele with the ornate, gothic melodrama of Kate Bush and Floodland-era Sisters of Mercy. Producer Paul Epworth (Bloc Party, Friendly Fires) knows that the fiercest weapon in his arsenal is Florence herself, and he stacks her vocals accordingly, creating a fevered, pagan gospel choir on “What the Water Gave Me” and “Leave My Body,” a ghostly, Phil Spector-ish chorale on the surprisingly Beatlesque “Breaking Down,” and a defiant, uplifting horde of merry pranksters on the spirited “Heartlines,” resulting in that rare sophomore outing that not only manages to avoid the slump, but bests its predecessor in the process. ~ James Christopher Monger
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2012 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

Booklet
2011's Ceremonials, which found Florence + the Machine expanding on their already expansive sound, helped to further propel the ghostly Brit into the spotlight, and on MTV Unplugged, she's come full circle, allowing fans a peek into the bombast while providing the aging, acoustic show with a little defibrillation. It's all well and good, with a solid set list that includes favorites from both records along with a pair of oddball covers, but Florence Welch's stadium-sized persona fights for air within the gothic confines of New York City's historic Angel Orensanz synagogue. You can really feel her holding back on reliable show stoppers like "Dog Days are Over," "Cosmic Love," and "Shake It Out," which is kind of the point for an unplugged session, but Welch's greatest strength is her ability to go from heartbreak to goose bumps without a bead of perspiration, and this well-played, technically sound set suffers a bit for its absence. That said, midtempo tracks like "Only If for a Night," "No Light, No Light," and "What the Water Gave Me," the latter of which finds Welch in full control of the room by the song's second half, are soulful, spooky, and bold, allowing room for both Welch and her machine to strut their stuff without sounding like a murder of caged crows. ~ James Christopher Monger
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2011 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

Precocious Brit Florence Welch fired a bullet into the head of the U.K. music scene in 2008 with the single "Kiss with a Fist," a punk-infused, perfectly juvenile summer anthem that had critics wiping the names Lily Allen, Amy Winehouse, and Kate Nash from their vocabularies and replacing them with Florence + the Machine. While the comparisons were apt at the time, "Kiss with a Fist" turned out to be a red herring in the wake of the release of Lungs, one of the most musically mature and emotionally mesmerizing albums of 2009. With an arsenal of weaponry that included the daring musicality of Kate Bush, the fearless delivery of Sinéad O'Connor, and the dark, unhinged vulnerability of Fiona Apple, the London native crafted a debut that not only lived up to the machine-gun spray of buzz that heralded her arrival, but easily surpassed it. Like Kate Bush, Welch has little interest (for the most part) in traditional pop structures, and her songs are at their best when they see something sparkle in the woods and veer off of the main trail in pursuit. "Kiss with a Fist," as good as it is, pales in comparison to standout cuts like "Dog Days Are Over," "Hurricane Drunk," "Drumming Song," "Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)," and "Cosmic Love," all of which are anchored to the earth by Welch's knockout voice, a truly impressive and intuitive trio of producers, and a backing band that sounds as intimate with the material as its creator. [Lungs was also released in a Deluxe Edition that included Lungs: The B-Sides, a bonus disc featuring studio tracks like “Swimming,” “Falling,” and “Heavy in Your Arms,” the latter of which appeared on the soundtrack for Twilight Saga: Eclipse, as well as live cuts (“You've Got the Dirtee Love"), demos (“Ghosts”), and remixes (the "Yeasayer Remix" of “Dog Days Are Over").] ~ James Christopher Monger
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2010 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

Released a year after Florence + the Machine's debut, Between Two Lungs is basically a souped-up reissue of Lungs, pairing that album's original track list with an extra disc of live material and remixes. Most interesting is the inclusion of "You Got the Dirtee Love," a mash-up collaboration with Dizzee Rascal that nearly topped the U.K. charts in early 2010. For those looking for the bonus material only, the second disc was also released digitally under the title Lungs: The B-Sides. ~ Andrew Leahey
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Alternative & Indie - Released April 12, 2018 | Virgin EMI

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Alternative & Indie - Released June 1, 2015 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Alternative & Indie - Released August 12, 2016 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Alternative & Indie - Released May 3, 2018 | Virgin EMI

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Film Soundtracks - Released August 26, 2016 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2012 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Alternative & Indie - Released March 11, 2015 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2011 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2010 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2010 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2012 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Alternative & Indie - Released November 27, 2015 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

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Alternative & Indie - Released August 28, 2015 | Universal-Island Records Ltd.

Artist

Florence + The Machine in the magazine
  • Florence, a woman that overcomes everything
    Florence, a woman that overcomes everything The story started ten years ago for Florence + The Machine with the single Kiss with a Fist that revealed a certain feminism and a strong personality.
  • The Qobuz Minute #38
    The Qobuz Minute #38 Presented by Barry Moore, The Qobuz Minute sweeps you away to the 4 corners of the musical universe to bring you an eclectic mix of today's brightest talents. Jazz, Electro, Classical, World music ...