Review: “Emerald Island” by Caro Emerald


Dutch Jazz singer Caro Emerald’s new EP album dropped March 2017

Ryan Turner, Staff Writer

Dutch jazz singer Caroline Esmeralda van der Leeuw, who goes by Caro Emerald, debuted her third album, “Emerald Island,” in March 2017. It had only six songs, but all were brilliant and very different from the tracks on her first two albums.

The album opens with “Tahitian Skies,” which is the best song on the album. It is a compelling story and has a jazzy tune combined with van der Leeuw’s flawless vocals, which keep the song going for the full three minutes and 44 seconds. The last half of the song is instrumental but is the same catchy beat that goes for the whole song. The next track is the haunting song “The Ghost Of You,” which is more jazzy and reminiscent of van der Leeuw’s first two albums, 2010’s “Deleted Scenes from the Cutting Room Floor” and 2013’s “The Shocking Miss Emerald.” It begins and ends with the same intro which sounds very much like a 1940’s jazz song. Once again, van der Leeuw’s voice and the great background instrumentals keep the song going.

The third and fifth tracks are not as good as the first two but are still very well done. “Never Ever” is the third song on the album, and is well written and well sung. The story it tells is similar to that of “Tahitian Skies,” but the best part is the trumpet solo near the end of the song. Then it goes to “Whatchugot,” which is a very fun song. The beat is as catchy as “Tahitian Skies,” but it is much easier to sing along to. The best part is the lyrics, mainly because this song contains the best two lines in the album, which are located in the bridge of the song and repeated twice.

You can call me crazy.

That’s my middle name.

These lines are entertaining and really add a story to the song that is similar to the ones told in “Tahitian Skies” and “Never Ever.”

The other two songs (the fourth and the sixth on the album) are instrumentals. “Exotic Flu” and “The Dark,” respectively, are much shorter and lack van der Leeuw’s voice, but that does not take much from their quality. “Exotic Flu” has a great piano, and the background noises sound very much like a tropical island, which is what this album is really meant to represent. “The Dark,”  like “The Ghost Of You,” is jazzy and has a static crackle in the background, such as one that would be heard on an old phonograph record player.

Caro Emerald has done it again. This may be her shortest album, but it has some of her best work. All of the songs are very memorable, up to the point where even the instrumentals are exciting. This album was amazing.