Dido, "Girl Who Got Away" (RCA Records)
Some artists are compelled to stay with a style they're comfortable with. Others? They're not shy about ranging into new territory now and then.
Dido? She's exploring new frontiers, soaking up the sights and sounds, coalescing her experiences, desires and treks into songs on "Girl Who Got Away" that jump from tart electronica-inspired landscapes to earnest, almost low-key folk-oriented confessions that can be likened to an afternoon coffee klatch for two.
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"No one could have told me how much I'd miss you, and how soon the world moves on," she sings in "Loveless Hearts," her voice an emotional sheen atop a gently rising crescendo of crisp keyboard tones climbing swiftly in time.
Such is the ranging, diverse offerings from "Girl Who Got Away," Dido's fourth album and first since 2008's "Safe Trip Home." It features styles that encompass lush orchestral layouts, darkly hypnotic dance grooves and the clarity of life and all its foibles. It's an intensely personal album, reflecting Dido's creative spark while retaining an accessibility that remains fresh, if not vital.