Think you know Christina Novelli? Well, you do… but not nearly as well as you’re about to! The penultimate month of 2019 sees the release of a longplayer that dispenses with the ‘featurings’, ‘&s’ and ‘withs’ and places her work centrestage under a single-beam-spotlight. By-lined ‘The Acoustic Sessions’, ‘Through My Eyes’ tells you all you need to know about its focus. This is an album that illuminatingly dials Christina’s songs – both recent and classic – right back to their origin points.
Be it the best known/received club-flamers from the last eighteen months, her own most recent solo singles or outright time-honoured classics, each has been stripped down to their bare acoustic bones. With them comes the opportunity to zero in not just on the intellect of their lyrics and the complexity of their (often competing) emotions, but on Christina’s exceptional, compelling, peerless voice.
With the synths unplugged, the bass muted and the studio boxes powered down, Christina rolls over the piano and pulls up a stool. Whether by design or circumstance, the nature of ‘Through My Eyes’ draws you up close to her methodology. Where the ‘feels’ or emotes of 21st century song-writing stop, Christina’s process manifestly starts. It’s one that places all-out emphasis on emotion, sincerity of soul, experiences shared and a wholeheartedness that never flinches from the truth.
It’s also one that’s not averse to laying bare the interpersonal challenges all humans experience (but only a few are able to lyrically hold a mirror to and vocally reflect). ‘Through My Eyes’ isn’t afraid of ‘the real’, or to even cross a line here and there. Further, shorn of their ‘club-clothing’, previously missed lyrical nuances jump into focus, new meanings are derived and different interpretations open up.
Whether it’s tracks whose titles are – ostensibly at least – heart-on-sleeve (‘It’ll End In Tears’, ‘I’m OK’), or those implicitly draped in metaphor (‘Lighting Fires’, ‘Concrete Angel’), Christina’s never less than captivating. Songs (not least ASOT’s 2018 Tune of the Year, ‘The Air I Breathe’) certainly tell stories, but ones that rarely play out in the conventional manner songwriting dictates. Demons are confronted – some defeated, others not, issues laid bare, friendships’ pressured, relationships broken (and rebuilt), and all in the intimately up-close manner that only acoustic can convey.
A powerball of emotion – start through finish, ‘Through My Eyes’ is Christina’s own vision of her music.
The album is released today and is available to stream or purchase now (https://blackhole.complete.me/throughmyeyes).
Christina Novelli – Through My Eyes [The Acoustic Sessions Vol. 1]
- The Air I Breathe (Acoustic)
2. The Love You Give (Acoustic)
3. Beautiful Life (Acoustic)
4. Be Without You (Acoustic)
5. Lighting Fires (Acoustic)
6. Symphony Of Stars (Acoustic)
7. Save You (Acoustic)
8. Concrete Angel (Acoustic)
9. Numb (Acoustic)
10. Black Hole (Acoustic)
11. It’ll End In Tears (Acoustic)
12. I’m Ok (Acoustic)
We’ve taken the chance to have a moment to talk with Christina about this gem of an album and about another very special moment in her life, her recent wedding! Christina and Tara tied the knot in an exclusive wedding on the Greek island of Santorini.
TBA: Hi Christina,I just wanna say congrats but don’t know exactly what to congratulate for first – if for the
wedding or for the acoustic masterpiece you just released. So, let’s start with the wedding, we are dying to know some details of
that magical day, pls tell us something.
CN: Thank you. Yes, both my parents traveled from England and Tara’s from Australia to celebrate with us along with other family and friends from all over the world.
It was the most stressful yet amazing time of my life. The wedding itself was beautiful, organizing two families from all over the world to attend was definitely challenging but so rewarding in the end!
TBA: ‘Through My Eyes’ is an acoustic jewel… we’ve it on repeat since the release date. At its very first listening
my thought was : “wow, if it was a foundation, I’d say this is my holy grail, that -your skin but better- one,
you know, the one that makes you perfect without making it obvious it’s there”. Where did you get the idea to release this acoustic album?
CN: My new acoustic album is something I’ve been wanting to make for well over 10 years. This album was my opportunity to strip my songs back to the raw beginning of them and share with my listeners the way I initially wrote and envisioned them. To be able to do this and to share that vulnerability with my listeners means everything.
TBA: Your lyrics are always so deep and emotional, and the stories you tell with them is something we can all
relate to at some point of our lives, would you mind telling us something about each of the tracks?
CN: Every song on this album is extremely special to me. Symphony of Stars I actually played at my wedding. I wrote this for Tara. Every song is an experience I have lived, an emotion I have felt.
There are second verses to a lot of songs that weren’t included in the dance versions, these second verses give more insight into the songs and their meanings.
TBA: There is one special song in this album, I just keep singing under the shower (and I feel sorry for the
neighbours cause I am not exactly a nightingale….) it’s ‘I’m Ok’, would love to know what inspired you to
write this one…
CN: To answer this question I will simply say, an experience in my life.
TBA: A special mention need to go to ‘Concrete Angel’ it always brings back so many good memories, is there still
something about this one that hasn’t been said and you would like to spot a light on?
CN: No 🙂 This song has been around for a long time and it is still one of my favourites. I simply couldn’t release an Acoustic album without including it!
TBA: Can you tell us something about ..how does the magic happen exactly when you create a lyrics? Do you start
playing around with your piano? Are some words just magically come to your mind while busy doing
something totally different?
CN: My writing process varies greatly and it can happen any of the ways you have said above. Certain experiences inspire me, hearing certain chords inspire me, my current mind set when I am writing. I find inspiration in all aspects of life.
TBA: Are you also writing in collaboration with someone at times? Or is it something you might consider to do?
CN: Yes, I write with other song writers and I also write on my own. I am always eager for co writes. I love to share the process of writing with other creatives and bounce of each other during the session. I also collaborate with producers obviously, this is a slightly different process but one I still very much enjoy!