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Breathing Under Water

Marié DigbyAudio CD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)


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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 15, 2009)
  • Original Release Date: 2009
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Hollywood Records
  • ASIN: B0026TWEXO
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #123,964 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Daybreak
2. Avalanche
3. Breathing Underwater
4. Shoulda Been Simple
5. Know You By Heart
6. Feel
7. Come Find Me
8. Symphony
9. Machine
10. Overboard f. Livvi Franc
11. Love With A Stranger
12. Come To Life
13. Crazier Things

Editorial Reviews

About the Artist

Digby first hit the national stage last year when a homemade video of her performing an acoustic cover of Rihanna's "Umbrella" made her a YouTube phenom (to date the clip has over 12 million views). "That was a really wonderful way to start. I could present myself exactly as I wanted," says Digby, who first started writing her own songs at age 15 on a $50 guitar she bought on a whim. Her first album, Unfold, debuted at #29 on the Billboard chart, # 2 on the iTunes album chart, # 3 on Billboard's Digital Top 100 album chart and prompted a successful string of film and television placements for her songs including ER, Greek, The Hills, One Tree Hill, and Smallville.

Prior to her YouTube fame and the success of Unfold, Digby was set on a much different course. The first child of a Japanese mother and Irish-American father, the Los Angeles native went off to college at Berkeley where she studied philosophy and figured she'd eventually follow in her dad's footsteps and go to law school.

So when she came home after finishing her freshman year and promptly announced she was dropping out to become a full-time musician, her parents were understandably baffled. In some ways, Digby surprised herself too. "I'm not one of those kids who was always in the school musical or was the star of the high school play," she says. "And even when I tried to get involved, I was often rejected. I figured I must be really bad."

Despite the odds, Digby couldn't ignore her inner voice. "I knew making it in music was impossible, but I didn't care what it took."

Product Description

From the opening beats of Breathing Underwater, the listener encounters a bold new Marié Digby. In marked contrast to the stripped-down vibe of her debut disc, Unfold, the album's fuller sound enhances Marié's (pronounced Mar-ee-AY) emotionally rich storytelling and dramatic vocals. The album is a deeply personal snapshot of her life--full of the kind of exposed emotions that make great songs.

"Everything was born right there in the moment," says Digby.

Written, produced and recorded over a three and a half month period in a Los Angeles studio, alongside renowned producers Brian Kennedy (Jennifer Hudson, Jesse McCartney, Rihanna), Ezekiel "Zeke" Lewis for the Clutch and The Movement among others, Breathing Underwater marks Digby's evolution from "the girl with the guitar" to a fully-emerged artist. Familiar themes continue to dominate her writing--love and all the conflicted emotions that come with it. But as much as Digby matured creatively during the making of Breathing Underwater, she grew even more personally.

"When I was making the album I was falling for someone--someone real and someone in front of me--and that was really scary," she continues. "There were days when I thought, this most wonderful thing I've ever felt. And there were days when I was tormented. That intensity came through in the songs."

So Digby pleads in the moving opening track, "Daybreak," a song about "not wanting a night to end, because you don't know what daylight will bring." The first single, "Avalanche," tracks a couple on the brink of falling apart. Even amidst catchy grooves and hooks, Digby's lyrical honestly shines through.

A tougher Digby surfaces on "Feel" and "Love With A Stranger." The former is taunt to an emotionally unavailable partner, while the latter is an endorsement of no-strings-attached encounters.

"'Feel' is about when you're pouring your heart out and you're not getting any kind of message back," she says. "Give me something, at least let me know that you're alive." The darkly hypnotic "Love With A Stranger" chronicles the desire to connect with another person physically, in the absence of something deeper.

"Come to Life," is a piano-laden pop track that puts the listener smack in the middle of Digby's most intimate thoughts. "It's a message to myself to be patient," she says. "I've learned that love is one of the few things in life that you can't force."

Things lighten up on "Know You By Heart," maybe the most surprising track on the album with its huge pop sensibility and rhythmic, club-worthy hook. "I`ve always loved dance music," admits Digby. "This was my chance to unleash my inner Kylie Minogue."

But it's perhaps "Symphony" that best sums up Digby's mindset. The song is a direct message to her fans--the ones who followed her though her YouTube stardom, open mic shows and first album. "I'm saying, `this is me needing the freedom to express myself musically and I hope you'll be open to it,'" she explains. "What a boring place this world would be if we all stayed still."


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
44 of 50 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Marié ventures from "stand-out" to "blend-in" September 7, 2009
Format:MP3 Music|Verified Purchase
This is a tough one. When I heard Marié Digby on NPR's Morning Edition Saturday with Scott Simon last year, I was so taken with her voice and style that I immediately downloaded "Unfold" from iTunes. The album was enchanting from open to close and most of its tracks remain in heavy rotation on my iPod. Marié's passion, sincerity, and beauty came through loud and clear in well-produced but organic arrangements. I could listen to this collection of songs over and over without losing interest.

Marié is clearly a music wonk. She loves it; she lives it! She works hard at her craft and the success of "Unfold" garnered her a well-deserved higher profile. And she never stops! Look at the wealth of content on her YouTube channel if you think she's not among the hardest working musicians in the business.

She was clearly keen to explore a new path. "Breathing Underwater" is the expression of this desire. Marié is completely ga-ga over her new "baby." And that's as it should be.

But I must confess that the new album falls fairly flat for me. The acoustic production that made her stand out has been replaced with drum machines, multi-layering, and auto-tuning. The delicate, vine-laden garden lattice of "Unfold" has been replaced by a hard, brick wall of sound this time out. Given the current state of mainstream music, she now blends in. I don't know why Marié would want to sound like so many other young women in the pop market. But that's where "Breathing Underwater" deposits her.

Marié is the beautiful woman who doesn't need makeup; you cringe a little bit when you see her layer it on in an apparent attempt to be more like her peers.

In the end it's Marié's call, alone, as to where she takes her music.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lost in transition September 8, 2009
Format:MP3 Music|Verified Purchase
I love Marie's first album and her youtube covers. Breathing Underwater is a departure from the sound and style that first drew me to her. The new album is multi layered sound spew. That isn't to say there aren't any good songs on it. There are, but you have to wade through a number of less than interesting songs to get to them. While expertly mixed (really, the EQing on this album is phenominal) its limp and lifeless in feeling. Perhaps I over expected it to be more of the same things she's been doing. I admit I just blindly bought the album without listening to it because she's so incredibely talented that I assumed I'd love this venture. If I had to classify this I would say its more Uber-Pop vs her previous style of Indie/Pop. I'm glad she's trying new expressions and ideas, this one though just doesn't fit me completely (hence the 3 stars).
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favorite CD of the Year September 8, 2009
Format:MP3 Music
This album has been a delight to listen to. I have heard very few perfect albums, but this compares to the beauty of albums like Vanessa Carlton "Heroes and Theives" and even John Mayer's "Continuum." I dropped dead when I saw amazon selling this album for so cheap. I would pay 40$ to have the songs "Machine" and "Feel" alone. This album connects Marie's beautiful lyrics with emotional tempos that together make an album that will be remembered by all who listen to it.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars In New Waters September 7, 2009
Format:MP3 Music
Like a few of the previous reviews, I am a Marie Digby fan and have seen her perform live several times. If you have not seen her live, I highly recommend it. In an intimate environment, with Marie and just her voice, keyboards, and guitar, her voice and music is captivating and sounds like she is pouring out her soul just for you. Simplicity speaks volumes for her. Her voice is vulnerable, honest, and tells a story you can relate to.

One of the problems for me that plagued her debut album, "Unfold", was the heavy production on the title track and "Beauty In Walking Away"; when there are too many cooks in the kitchen, tinkering with ProTools, it distracts from her voice and lyrics.

So it was a shock to me when I heard the first single, "Avalanche", from the new album "Breathing Underwater". There was so much going on in the song; it was even more produced than anything on "Unfold".

I read Marie's decision to make her sophomore album "Breathing Underwater" with heavier beats and autotune was to venture out of her comfort zone and try something new. I applaud her for that. If one doesn't take risks, they'll know what they are capable of.

Does the album work? Parts of it. When the production, her voice, and lyrics work, it is a recipe for VERY GOOD Pop with a message ("Crazier Things", the title track, and perhaps "Come To Life" and "Symphony"). When it doesn't, it's a generic dance tune that could be the voice of anybody ("Know You By Heart") or earnest but overbearing ("Feel" - somewhere in this track is a heart-wrenching song, but the over-the-top drum machine blaring is deafening).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
This cd has been #1 in my cd rotation for several weeks. This is a great cd that has it all- depth, light, emotion, upbeat, romantic, hopeful, etc... There are only a handful of cd's that are outstanding all the way through and hold up over a long period of time.

I enjoy her first cd, but seriously, it's like comparing high school and college, she has really grown in all the best ways and this new cd totally shows her strengths and depth of talent and passion. If you expect a repeat of her first cd you may be a bit disappointed, but stay open-minded and I think you'll find an artist that has graduated from above average to truly exceptional.

I'm a very critical listener who doesn't give praise easily. This cd works like a one of Kate Bush's classics.

Incredible cd, keep up this original path you are on Marie!!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A gem of a purchase from a rsing star, Marié Digby.
The passion and life experience that went into writing the songs is highlighted with the sweet melodic voice of the artist, Marié Digby.
Would recommend this purchase.
Published on August 5, 2010 by John K.
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing grace
amazing grace because her voice is graceful and she sing what she 'feels'. Feelings are alive in her songs, and touch you in a rare and beautiful way. Read more
Published on August 3, 2010 by calileane
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, but she's capable of much better
Like a lot of the reviewers here I positively loved Unfold and had this album pre-ordered. It is not disappointing but, rather, very different from Unfold and not the best use of... Read more
Published on June 17, 2010 by C. Hannum
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Pop Album
Marié is an acoustic singer/songwriter, but this is a pop album. Don't dismiss it just on genre, it's a great album and I've heard her perform some of these songs live... Read more
Published on February 16, 2010 by Roy Furukawa
1.0 out of 5 stars Quite bad, sorry.
I wanted to like this album...I first ran into the song "Say It Again" and liked it a lot, so I bought this album, figuring that it had the same sound. Read more
Published on February 3, 2010 by Daniel G. Hyams
5.0 out of 5 stars CAUTION!! Awfully Misleading - Great for Junior Popsters
MUST READ --- This music is Junior POP NOT SINGER-SONGWRITER!!!!!!! First of all, I do not like Pop so this is not my kind of music. Read more
Published on February 3, 2010 by J. B. Fletcher
2.0 out of 5 stars Breathing Underwater: Would the real Marie Digby please stand up?
When I first discovered Marie Digby, I was overjoyed. A popular artist who DIDN'T sound just like everyone else...how much better could it get? Read more
Published on January 8, 2010 by TaylorSwiftLover14
4.0 out of 5 stars YouTube Sensation Has Her Own CD
I "discovered" Marie Digby on YouTube some time ago. She would occasionally post some videos of herself singing some AMAZING renditions of popular songs, and I found myself... Read more
Published on December 22, 2009 by Jody Carter
2.0 out of 5 stars For J-Pop fans only
Really corny pop music, very disappointing (not sure now what I had read or heard that made me think it would be more mature and singer-songwriter-ish). Read more
Published on December 5, 2009 by L. Malloy
4.0 out of 5 stars Solid sophomore effort
I just received "Breathing Underwater" (promptly as usual, thank Amazon!), and popped it into the car for a listen on the way to work. Read more
Published on November 16, 2009 by Eric Cheng
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Topic From this Discussion
Japanese Import?
I remember the artist talked about filming videos for a special 2 disk version of the album. Not sure if this will be offered for pre-orders on Amazon though. Last time, for Unfold, I pre-ordered on Amazon and just received the regular one disk edition of the album.

That is why I'm holding out... Read More
May 14, 2009 by pookybear |  See all 5 posts
static and distortion on 1st track?
I believe the track is supposed to sound like that in the beginning?
Sep 7, 2009 by pookybear |  See all 16 posts
Great voice Be the first to reply
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