Bat for Lashes - The Haunted Man
Lush vocals, lavish dream pop and tunes of the highest order
Natasha Khan released exquisite second album Two Suns months before Florence and the Machine’s inferior and overrated Lungs in 2009. The latter went multi-platinum, while the former has considered going back to her old job as a primary teacher.
The Haunted Man will hopefully help redress that commercial imbalance, as BFL bids to make three Mercury nominations out of three. Standout singles are lacking, but in the lush vocals and lavish dream pop stakes, there are tunes of the highest order; see lady-themed ‘Laura’ and ‘Marilyn’, following the single-named pattern she set with ‘Sarah’ on her debut Fur and Gold. ‘Laura’ is a majestic piano ballad as butt naked as Khan on the cover, ‘Marilyn’ a glacial, pulsing wonder like Cocteau Twins gone arena epic.