Eye to the Telescope

Artist: KT Tunstall

Distributed by: Virgin Records

Reviewed by Melissa Minners

            I remember the very first day I was introduced to the music of KT Tunstall.  I was driving to work and this song came over the radio.  “WooHoo…WooHoo…WooHoo…,” followed by some rather interesting lyrics about a black horse, a cherry tree and the singer’s heart.  I remember thinking to myself, “There has to be some symbolism regarding the black horse and the cherry tree.”  But at that point, I was more intrigued by the sound of the guitar combined with the “WooHoo” that gave the song the feel of a speedy train heading down the track.  I remember hoping to hear the song again so I could get a clearer idea of what the lyrics were saying.  I was so intrigued by the song that I immediately told a friend about it – “You have to hear this song called Black Horse and The Cherry Tree.  The sound is really cool…like a train moving down a track…and the singer’s voice is really soulful.  I don’t know who she is, but I think she has a hit!

            A week or two later, I heard the song again.  I happened to be with my friend at the local Barnes & Noble.  Grabbing my friend by the arm I yelled, “This is it!”  Of course, this earned me a perplexed expression.  “The song,” I explained.  “Listen!”  My friend listened and liked what she heard.  As it turned out, Barnes and Noble was playing an entire album of songs by this singer.  I later discovered that this new talent was Scottish singer KT Tunstall and the album was entitled Eye to the Telescope.  I really enjoyed what I heard over the Barnes and Noble speakers, but for some reason or other, I never bought the CD.

            Then I started hearing KT Tunstall all over the place!  The song Suddenly I See was used for The Devil Wears Prada.  It was later featured on Ugly Betty and a few other television spots (commercials, etc.).  Once again, I fell in love with the song – the beat…again somewhat sounding like a train making its way down the track, but still different from Black Horse and The Cherry Tree; the clean, crisp soul found in the vocals; the music that made you want to get up and dance.  I was hooked on KT Tunstall at this point.  Then Other Side of the World hit the airwaves and I once again yearned to own this album.  Happily, my sister bought it for me as a birthday gift.

            In addition to the songs I had already fallen in love with, Eye to the Telescope featured songs that showed KT Tunstall’s range as an artist.  Each song on the album was in the rock/pop genre, but there was a different feel to each one.  Songs like Under the Weather, Another Place to Fall and Heal Over send a message of heartfelt emotion.  Miniature Disasters speaks to our fears and our need to take on and overcome the darker times in our lives.  The music combined with the pure and soulful vocals of KT Tunstall keep you hooked – as each song on the album plays, you find it hard to do anything but pay complete attention to the music.  The lyrics use a great deal of symbolism to get points across, but it’s not hard to figure out what the singer is trying to say.  Of course, Black Horse and The Cherry Tree on the album is a tad different from the version played on the radio.  It’s a bit longer and there’s a more bluesy vibe to it.  I confess to loving both versions equally.

            After listening to the album only once, I found that I could sing along to each and every track of Eye to the Telescope.  The lyrics are that catchy.  The music will make you tap your feet, strum your air guitar and sing along at full volume.  There was no denying it from the very first time I heard KT Tunstall on the radio – this is one performer who is going to go far and Eye to the Telescope is a highly successful step in the right direction!  What a terrific birthday gift and a great addition to my music collection!


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