Tara VanFlower, (who some of you may recognize as the former frontwoman of the now-defunct darkwave band Lycia) has put together one hell of an ambient/experimental record. Most ambient/experimental records fall down in one of two places, depending on which aspect, the ambient or the experimental, is being emphasized. Ambient records tend to be too... ambient, they fade into the background but they fail to set a mood. Experimental records on the other hand... To paraphrase J.G. Ballard, the only thing that most experimental records accomplish is to prove the experiment has failed.
With ?My Little Fire-Filled Heart? Tara VanFlower has pulled together a group of songs that avoid both pitfalls. They set a mood without being innocuous and they play with traditional notions of songwriting and instrumentation without devolving into an unlistenable mess.
The tone of the disc is bleak and surreal. Tara sings (and at times recites) broken love songs over a bed of drones, chimes, stuttering guitar and her own voice looped, twisted and mutated. It?s compelling stuff. The highlights of the record include ?Rabbit? in which her voice has a surprisingly bluesy lilt, the eerie ?I Lost the Moon?, and her take on the traditional ?A Conversation With Death?. 9/10 -- Neddal Ayad (16 June, 2005)