Magazine article New Internationalist

Echobelly. Everyone's Got One

Magazine article New Internationalist

Echobelly. Everyone's Got One

Article excerpt

Since the release of their debut album Everyone's Got One the acclaim surrounding Echobelly has reached exponential proportions. The young five-piece band's brash, confident pop has the same classic, wordy feel as that of the Smiths. And their line-up is refreshingly multi-cultural, including Swedish guitarist Gellen Johansson and Debbie Smith, a black gay musician whose brittle textures in her former band Curve have drawn many a sigh of admiration.

But most attention has come to rest on vocalist and lyricist Sonya Aurora Madan. Elfin and photogenic, Echobelly's Indian-born, British-raised leader has become the focus of those with an interest in assessing women's place in the music industry. Madan is, after Sheila Chandra, the most visible Asian woman so far to penetrate the independent music scene's white male bastion. And if her sweet, melodic voice belies her impact, her expressive lyrics do not. Her songs deal with contentious issues in a sparklingly undogmatic way. …

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