About Tina Dico
At the recording studio in Copenhagen, Tina Dico, multiple platinum award winner and singer/songwriter with superstar status in her native country, Denmark, is applying the finishing touches to her new album, Welcome Back Colours cheduled for release on Feb 1, 2011. Deciding the title was easy. Deciding on a definition proves to be much more difficult. Is the album a classic greatest hits compilation, featuring an overview of her commercially most successful releases? Her latest offering, which is full to the rim, includes too many new songs or newly arranged audience favourites to carry that label. Or is it perhaps one of your regular best-of compilations where artists in their vanity tend to push titles into the limelight which never became hits, despite their hoped-for ingeniousness? In the previous nine years of her career, Tina Dico didn’t have much time for vanity. As a one-woman record company without a big budget, she had to work hard to expand her level of popularity outside Scandinavia. Which worked best live on stage, she found. Sometimes accompanied only by her acoustic guitar, sometimes supported by her trio, she toured America and Europe several times in the past decade, debuted on a club stage and frequently returned to play bigger, sold-out venues in the same city during her next visit. For this reason, she saw her temporarily adopted home city of London comparatively rarely. For the 32-year-old, airports took on a kind of home-like quality in the abstracted perception which constant travelling frequently brings about. Her songs were conceived during her journeys. Tina Dico drew her creative energy from the friction of permanently being on the road. The self-imposed route which Tina Dico chose as an artist was exciting, successful, disciplinal, straightforward, exhausting, honest, adventurous, and in the colour perception of her senses it ultimately turned into a black and white colour palette.
Welcome Back Colour has much more to offer in its lavishness than DNA extracts from best-of and greatest hits compilations. The album draws a final stroke under Tina Dico’s career to date and is a new beginning or indeed a departure into the full colour range of human emotions and their different shades. To get this far, she needed the peace and reflection which she didn’t find before the end of last year when she retreated to her native Denmark, she says. “I started to process my previous artistic work and could have been proud of myself. Instead, I felt this urgent need for change. I come from a very structured family, and I suppose for the past ten years I was busy breaking out of structures. I wouldn’t want to miss that time because short-term encounters with people and fast goodbyes set free creative forces in me to write songs. I still like to travel, but these days I no longer enjoy long tours because I have created a place for myself to return to. This will probably change my music, although I have no idea which direction it will take.” Her new single, which is also the title track of her new album, Welcome Back Colour, gives us an idea. Tina Dico’s music has by no means become more idyllic but, quite the opposite, more experimental and multi-layered than before. The song which was created in collaboration with Iceland’s multitask instrumentalist and creative mind, Helgi Jonsson, featuring a staccato-like guitar chord over a pulsating beat, sketches that atmosphere of departure which also lured Paper Thin and Instead, the two other new tracks on the album, onto previously uncharted terrain. Love All Around and Goldhawk Road, two songs which had previously been available only on soundtrack albums, close the circle between Tina Dico’s musical visions of the future and her many familiar songs. Nine of her classics, such as Count To Ten, Warm Sand and On The Run, complete the new album which is as much a retrospective as it is an anticipatory situation analysis. The Welcome Back Colour “special edition”, which features an additional CD of epic proportions, allows an additional perspective on Tina Dico’s songwriting art in the shape of new, sparse, acoustically instrumented arrangement jewels from her songwriting canon. Previously unreleased duets and a single B-side are embedded in this nonchalant game of musical fine motor skills.
To make room, clarify issues, open doors to more spacious rooms has been Tina Dico’s motto here at the studio in Copenhagen. “It would have been disrespectful toward the acoustic side of my music if I had only included the radio singles and new uptempo numbers on my new record. Acoustic songs take up a lot of space in my creative work, and I wanted to allow them the room they deserve on the second CD. You could say that you experience a woman alone with her acoustic guitar on this record, which takes me back to the very beginning of my career. After all, that’s how I began my journey to the myth of music. Music is the naked truth of our emotions.” Tina Dico pauses for a moment, smiles and adds: “Naked is the appropriate term, but truth is such a meaningful word for so many people that I can’t bring myself to say it without a little irony.” Cleverly placed ironic breaks in her lyrics are just as much part of her songwriting signature as the unconditional emotionality of her songs. Her clear, refreshingly cool vocals protect her at certain degrees of intensity from pure navel-gazing. At the same time, you can discover a good piece of truth between the occasionally brutal intimacy of her carefully arranged folk pop songs and the extroversion of her pop music works of art which take us by the hand and lead us on a stroll. Her truth, her life, her passion. Welcome Back Colour is a preliminary, furious manifesto of exploring the lights and shadows of her personality.
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