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Dec 12 / Prinza

Bittersweet return of the troubadours

Pop fans are known to have the attention spans of goldfish, which makes the sustained success of Richard Ashcroft’s less than prolific career a genuine mystery. The former Verve singer has been quiet since 2002 – getting on for four years, during which time Craig David and Ms Dynamite have scaled the heights and fallen into the dumper – when the pallid sales and critical mauling received by his pompous second album, Human Conditions, sent him into hiding.’Comfort of Strangers’, the title track of Orton’s new album, shut everyone up for good. ‘I’d rather have no love than not enough,’ she sang, her once-reedy voice richer and more pleasing than it’s ever been. The sound of a woman who’s not afraid to change.

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