Release Date: Jun 13, 2006
Record label: Sire
Genre(s): Indie, Rock, Singer-Songwriter
Russian-American songwriter Regina Spektor is a self-proclaimed "dork", conjuring up memories of Tori Amos. It's an apt comparison, because Spektor's first major-label release sets her up as a serious rival for Amos's queen-of-whimsy title. If elected (not inconceivable, considering the big-budget production that gives her girlish voice a very commercial cut-glass clarity), she'll bring to the job a highly appealing, open-hearted freshness.
On Begin to Hope, Regina Spektor treads a delicate balance between her anti-folk past and her present home on Sire Records. Though the label re-released Soviet Kitsch in 2004, Begin to Hope is Spektor's first original material for Sire, and it feels more like a major-label debut than Soviet Kitsch ever did. The album's big, glossy production and preponderance of drum machines and keyboards inches Spektor toward territory that isn't exactly mainstream, but is closer to a more conventional adult alternative singer/songwriter sound.