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Santogold

108 customer reviews

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Audio CD, April 29, 2008
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

"The future of music, today" - Rolling Stone 10 Artists To Watch. "Singing in a haunting, sensual wail...she adds a layer of softness to an unusual mix of synthesizers, dance hall rhythms, and percolating new wave" - NY Times. "Future-pop princess...next big thing" - Spin. "Santi White is Santogold...the collaborators and players may change, the sounds may shift, but at the center is one woman's indelible vision" - The Fader. SXSW / Coachella shows, 2007 tours with Bjork, M.I.A., songs featured in Entourage, Grey's Anatomy, Grand Theft Auto.

Amazon.com

Don't call Santi White an R&B artist: on her debut album Santogold, this former music biz A&R and pop songwriter for hire is challenging race stereotypes and playing fast and loose with genre, mashing up dub, punk, and electronics to make an energetic, anger-fuelled music that blurs the lines between the dancefloor and the moshpit. Comparisons to MIA hold some water, especially on the bullish "Creator" (it's worth noting that Santogold features production turns from sometime MIA collaborators Diplo and Switch). For the most part, though, Santogold's debut follows a quite different path. "L.E.S Artists" is stirring new-wave pop that builds to grand, tearful choruses reminiscent of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, while "You'll Find a Way" and "Say Aha" are propulsive ska-pop numbers that hark back to its creator's previous band, Bad Brains-influenced punks Stiffed. But it's not just skilful genre-skipping to recommend this record, though: White is the rare vocalist that can sound empowered and vulnerable within the space of the same song, and it's her force of character that places Santogold ahead of the pack. --Louis Pattison


Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 29, 2008)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Downtown
  • ASIN: B0014DC046
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (108 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #33,191 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

51 of 56 people found the following review helpful By Nse Ette TOP 1000 REVIEWER on May 17, 2008
Format: Audio CD
I first heard of Santogold late last year when a few sites, Rolling Stone and The BBC included, raved about her being one of the faces to watch out for in 2008. I later found out she contributed her vocals to "Pretty green" on Mark Ronson's "Version" album.

First of all, I was amazed to find out she's American, I think she sounds very British, not unlike M.I.A. whom almost everyone keeps comparing her to, but with more pop appeal. Her voice is something of a raspy yell, not unlike Gwen Stefani's, and her sound is a hodge podge of eighties music styles.

Determined not to get pigeonholed as an R&B singer on account of her race, she tackles electro dub; the moody "Shove it", "Creator" (laden with electronic buzzes and effects), the fantastic "Unstoppable" (with jittery sounding synths, a favourite of mine), and the remix of "You'll find a way". The last pair are the most M.I.A sounding on the album.

The rest is electro rock/pop. Opening cut "L.E.S artistes" has chugging synths and wouldn't sound out of place on a No Doubt album. Bouncier are "You'll find a way", and "Say aha". "My superman" (with a laid back vocal delivery) is a creepy sounding song with an echoing riff, it sounds like the soundtrack to some spy thriller and is a favourite of mine.

"Lights out" has her singing in a smooth cooing voice not unlike Debbie Harry in Blondie, set to a chugging riff (and jangly guitars). "Starstruck" is a slow grinding number with moody sounding synths and electro flourishes, and also downtempo is "I'm a lady" (think Gwen Stefani's "Cool"), and the mellow "Anne" with ghostly wailing and a gently pulsing synth riff is awesome.

Listening through the entire album, I found there wasn't any single track I wanted to skip. Diverse sounds and intelligent lyrics which all stand well together. Pure Gold in my opinion, and yes, she's definitely one to watch out for!
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By cxd on May 1, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I too saw Santogold open for Bjork last year and have been eagerly awaiting her debut CD. I bought the singles when they became available a while ago & now the entire CD. I am not disappointed in the least! Great music, infectious beats, a truly distinctive voice - the CD is 5 Star all the way. I cannot wait to see her in person again. Hopefully she will come back to her native Philly!

Standouts are L.E.S. Artistes, Creator, and Shove It!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By S. Newport on May 3, 2008
Format: Audio CD
If you haven't heard of Santogold yet it's about time that you did. She's written with Lily Allen and Mark Ronson, and has been compared to MIA and Karen O. She is a college-educated singer-songwriter and producer, whose singles Creator/LES Artistes and LES artistes are released together.

Her Myspace site describes her as a basement rock and Bananarama-soundclash artist, which is a wild combination but pretty accurate.

She's an American lady doing an almost tribal-dancehall-electro-grime-punk-ragga fling. Creator/LES Artistes uses haunting, shrieking voice and electric whines with wonderful shifts of tone throughout aided by Freq Nasty's sublime rhythm section. Simultaneously she has a slight old school humour to her, it's reminiscent of the routes and roots of the most innovative Missy Elliott material. It's very exciting to be so close to something so rare and so new.

She has this fantastic ability to blend into two tracks which sound so different and yet so the same. Her voice shows off its versatility in tone and delivery. In LES Artistes it is quirky and fine somewhere between Rihanna and Karin Dreijer Andersson of The Knife, while in Creator/LES Artistes she aggresively, rapidly, fluently raps as well as anyone.

LES Artistes addresses the issues of pretentious followers and standing up for what she believes. It's a nice reminder that she had unmitigated creative control over the forthcoming album. Creator/LES Artistes sharply brings out this theme again "Me, I'm a Creator/LES Artistes, thrill is to make it up, the rules I break got me a place, up on the radar". I'm very glad she has.

The suspenseful escalating drama of the single is her lyrical and sonic manifesto, and hopefully the world will listen up.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Andrew Ellington VINE VOICE on February 25, 2010
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Okay, so I owe the movie `Fame' a little piece of my current happiness since it was during a particular scene of the film where I whipped out my phone and pulled up that blessed V Cast song ID app and found myself searching the internet for anything I could find on Santogold (or is it Santigold?). `You'll Find A Way' is just all sorts of O-M-G amazing, and the best thing about this self titled debut solo project is that, well, it's not the only song that makes me go O-M-G!

Seriously...

O
M
G

I hope that Rolling Stone was practicing their prolific powers when they declared that Santogold was the "future of music" because I could totally get all wrapped up in this new wave of artistry. For the record, I am not a gigantic fan of M.I.A., an artist who Santogold happens to draw comparisons to. I mean, I like M.I.A., but I find that overall her style overshadows any real substance and her work resembles the early stages of a well intentioned experiment.

Santogold fine-tunes that same experiment, with stunning results.

A flawless mix of punk, industrial, jazz, ska, R&B, hip-hop, dance, techno, African tribal and just about anything else you can think of, Santogold's self titled album is the definition of music. Santi White's vocals are nothing short of tantalizing, simply haunting in their almost eerie sense of provocative sensuality.

You are intrigued as much as you are cautious.

For me, there are a few prime standouts. Both versions of `You'll Find A Way' are just stunning, especially the album version, which for me feels a bit more organic.
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Topic From this Discussion
one woman's vision? yes the woman is M.I.A.
Agreed. Creator is a great track that is very similar to a lot of the tracks on Kala because (shock!) they were produced by Switch. They both borrow from the past quite well. But I have to say, M.I.A. live is not just entertainment, it really is an experience, and seeing them both together on... Read More
May 2, 2008 by Michael Danziger |  See all 6 posts
This is WEAK, WEAK, WEAK
Dreadful chick music from a girl who can't sing, whose voice keeps rising beyond her range to sheer irritation. Santogold (music producer) has made a cynical calculation that she too, can make the shallow music she admires. Santigold is 99 percent packaging.
Aug 28, 2012 by tierny |  See all 4 posts
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