On The Download: Dido’s ‘Safe Trip Home’

After a five-year absence, British songstress Dido is back with her third studio album, “Safe Trip Home,” which was released on Tuesday, November 18.

Like her previous two outings, “Safe” is no deviation from formula for the woman who is best known for her mega-hits “Thank You” and “White Flag.” The British chill-out sound is alive and well here, and if you listened to her previous two albums on constant repeat (and if, in the 90s, you listened to a lot of Everything But The Girl), this album will please.

I happen to be a huge fan of Dido’s. Her music is ambient music in life for me – it’s music that I write to, music that I listen to on long flights, music that I thrown on when I have a fire burning at home – her lyrics are profound and thoughtful, even though the melodies on many tracks sound similar.

Dido offered the track “Look No Further” for free from her Web site, starting back in August. The first official single, “Don’t Believe In Love,” is a much stronger track, although it won’t be nearly the radio hit that “White Flag” was back in 2003.

But ultimately, the singles aren’t really what a Dido album’s all about – hers are albums that you listen to from start-to-finish. There’s really not a weak track on the album. Just perfect vocal after perfect vocal.

Dido moved to Los Angeles to write and record “Safe Trip Home,” and her journey living in the States is reflected in her lyrics. She herself plays guitar, piano, bells, some drums and (yes!) the recorder on the album.

There’s a deluxe version of the album available, along with two bonus tracks, and a remix of the song “Northern Skies” by her brother, the British DJ, Rollo, whose production company also produced “Safe Trip Home” (along with Jon Brion, who’s also produced for Fiona Apple, Kayne West, Rufus Wainwright, Eels).

On a final note, I do indeed hope that Dido tours to support this album. I caught her live at the Beacon Theater in NYC in 2004, and she’s quite amazing live. If you get a chance to see her live – don’t walk… run!

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