Noemi's not at all obvious turning point

Noemi’s not at all obvious turning point

Ten years ago, on February 20, 2014, Naomi released his third album, “Made in London”. At the press conference to present the then 32-year-old’s album Veronica Scopelliti the word that was most frequently associated with the album was ‘international’, due to the sound and also because the album, as its title suggests, was recorded entirely in London. The question that was asked instead Naomi was: “Can I make an international album without losing my Italian identity?”. Whether it succeeded or not, judge for yourself by listening to the songs from the album that we report below and reading the review that he wrote for us ten years ago. Pop Topoi.

Noemi is one of the Italian interpreters who have had the most luck in the author lottery in recent years. Leaving aside for a moment her vocal skills and image, which certainly influence the results, the excellent songs that touched her or that she chose (among all, “L’amore si hate”, “Per tutto la vita”, “Sono just words”, “Empty to lose”) have gone on to build a small but very solid repertoire in just a few seasons. With her third studio album and her third Sanremo, Noemi however needs to establish herself as an interpreter who is not only credible but also contemporary (an adjective very dear to this festival). The foreign collaborators and the trip abroad underline a necessary change and allow this album to be promoted by classifying it as “research” or using artificial definitions such as “London sound”.

Given that the sound of London, if it exists, today should be sought in the territories of Rudimental or Katy B (and certainly cannot be captured with a Ryanair ticket), “Made in London” is a convincing and very well-finished album. You can already sense it from the graphic design of the always good Paolo De Francesco, you can already understand it from the first notes of “Acciaio”. It is a new Noemi, more aggressive and more confident despite the still somewhat naive Italian lyrics and the imperfect pronunciation in the English ones.

First of all, it is surprising that the Sanremo songs “A man is a tree” and “Bagnati dal sole” are not very representative of the album. The first, full of brass instruments, was the one that made the most sense to perform with an orchestra, but that slightly retro (and slightly hippie) text perhaps didn’t hit the mark; the second, less original in structure and sounds but more enthralling (Noemi succeeded in the difficult task of making the Ariston audience clap her hands in time), continues to grow after the public’s lukewarm reception to the televoting, and the radio broadcasts that It’s accumulating, I’m proof of that.

It is appreciable that the singer presented herself with two songs full of optimism on the stage of lovelorn par excellence, but the album offered better as well as more immediate options: “If you were here” and “Alba” are classic ballads but very suggestive, “Sempre in viaggio” and “Don’t get me wrong” could have been two good uptempo choices and would still have represented a break for Noemi (“Don’t get me wrong”, which starts with a Coldplay-esque introduction and closes with some clever hints of electronics, makes use of the collaboration of Dimitri Tikovoi, the producer who, among other things, changed Placebo’s sound).

There are weaker moments, such as the English experiment “Passenger” (written by Jamie Hartman, an author who ranges from Christina Aguilera to Westlife: not exactly a guarantee) and “All the gold in the world” (signed by her ex-partner of X Factor Daniele Magro), but overall “Made in London” represents a turning point that is not at all obvious for Noemi. And, out of ambition and courage, she sweeps away all the records made in the last year by her colleagues without a surname.