From: The Breathing [url]
Date: April 07, 2008

Terami Hirsch
A Broke Machine

by Elwood Cruz

On her new album, A Broke Machine, Terami Hirsch continues to delve deeper into the realm of electronic landscapes with the ever-present keyboards laying the groundwork for the music. An intricately crafted collection of songs, A Broke Machine is a remarkable accomplishment from the independent Los Angeles-based artist and proves once again her talent in writing imaginative and often poetic lyrics and song.

Right from the beginning, with the aptly named "Back to the Start," the combination of electronics, keyboards, and percussion melodiously join together to give these songs much depth and complexity. Terami's voice is noticeably stronger and more adventurous, evident on the soaring vocals on "Chains of Andromeda," and "What I Didn't See," with its driving and forceful chorus.

On "Fable Moon" we hear hints of Terami's more jazzy side with a song that would fit perfectly in a smoke-filled nightclub, while the title track retains her introverted personality in which Terami's wistful performance is accompanied appropriately by a beautiful cello. Definitely a standout track of the album, "Diagram of Love" opens with a haunting beat and minimal piano that progresses into a powerful song that will leave a lasting impression long after its end.

Not to be outdone by the vocals, Terami's skill in conjuring up detailed imagery with her lyrics are showcased throughout the whole album, like on "A Hundred Flowers" where she sings:

"These are the words / We don't know how to say / Waiting in our mouths / 'Til they fall out wild and rearranged / This is the winter / After red has turned to grey / Though we never said enough / Words are not enough for us to change"

A Broke Machine is one of those albums that continues to reveal a new layer with each listen. Unafraid to pour her heart out into the creation of her work, A Broke Machine is a testament to Terami's talent and dedication in producing honest and thought-provoking music. Her ability to draw the listener into her musical world is only further justified with this latest offering. A Broke Machine is Terami's finest work yet.