Emerald Island by Caro Emerald 💋 EP Review


Written by Thelonia

I've been a fan of Caro Emerald ever since I heard her hit "That Man" in high school. The Dutch songstress's blend of old-timey vintage sound and more modern producing techniques put her in a genre that is mostly Electro Swing (which, when you do a google search on the term, pretty quickly pulls up this article on why it's the worst music genre of all time, which um, alright, thanks Vice). Her most recent EP, Emerald Island, keeps that vintage sound but adds some Exotica to the mix, delivering a sultry smooth throwback EP for when you want to lounge on the beach with a martini, or just lie around the house in the Summer and pretend you're on a beach, being glamorous and alternating between getting your heart broken and breaking hearts yourself.

The album starts off with the slow jam of "Tahitian Skies." The instrumentation and beat suggest a beach and you can totally picture this song as the introductory song of a movie about a black widow heading away to the Bahamas to 'relax' after the untimely death of her dearly beloved (third) husband.

Because she also has a lot of pictures with huge hats, this is what I am picturing in terms of costuming.
On "The Ghost of You," Caro reflects on a past love affair that ended badly. The nonchalance with which Caro reflects on this man makes sense given the fact that she has, at this point, sung countless songs about men hurting her (/her hurting men), and her general attitude towards love has sort of started to resemble a Bond romance (in that it doesn't involve much romance, it'll probably end badly, and someone will be wearing a full tux and/or slinky dress).
Side Note, we need to bring back dramatic monologues in the middle of songs, god I love them so much.
If the previous two tracks portray the narrator in a powerful state, "Never Ever" is where the curtain parts a bit and you see that despite her confidence, sometimes things happen beyond her control. The general theme of this song is that even though Caro thought that this person would work with her, all she got was taken advantage of. Do I think this would make a good pre-cursor to a revenge rampage in this black widow movie I am now imagining? Yes, yes I do.

"Exotic Flu" is an instrumental track of just about a minute that just sort of happens quietly and leaves. Not much to write home about, but not too bad.

The next track, "Watchugot," might engender some annoyance by factor of its title, but with its bouncy and catchy chorus, you'll find yourself singing along quickly. Although the switch of subject from Tahitian skies to Italian stuff (Toscanini, Puccini, and Ferraris among them) in the context of a dude she's hitting on does sort of make it seem like now that's she's over her heartbreak she's ready to get back out there and mingle (and maybe find her next victim).

"The Dark" is kind of an underwhelming ending to the EP. It sort of reminds me of loading screen music for a video game (or, I guess if we're sticking with the black widow movie, would work as a main menu song), but overall kind of leaves the overall feel of the EP kind of underwhelming. Not sure this one is needed.

Overall, Emerald Island is a definite must if you're headed for the beach & want to channel your femme fatale vibes (or if you just want to lounge around feeling equally fabulous at home). You can probably stop listening after "Watchugot" though.

Emerald Island can be downloaded on iTunes and played on all streaming services.

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