Astrid Williamson

One Little Indian

The breathy, ethereal sounding vocals of singer-songwriter Astrid Williamson take centre-stage throughout Pulse – an album best listened to when in a reflective mood. A simple musical backdrop of acoustic guitar, keyboard, and mystical sounding percussion allows Williamson’s voice to soar, and it’s a voice with pleasing overtones of Björk and Sinead O’Connor.

Slow and mellow, with a purity of both sound and thought, Pulse offers few surprises as it unfolds and sits most comfortably in the easy listening category. Don’t be put off by this, however, as two of the tracks stand out as notable exceptions to this rule, suggesting Williamson’s greater versatility: Cherry, with its unexpected exoticism, and Miracle, summery and upbeat with a Magic Numbers-style sound.

Also, those who listen closely to lyrics will find more depth here than a first listening reveals. Much of the material speaks affectingly of heartbreak and the eventual freedom that can be achieved from it, so it really can be said that the album not only has a pulse, but also a heart and a soul.

Grace Henderson