Label: Mute Records Release Date: 09/03/09 Link: You’d be doing yourself a grand disservice if you dismissed multi-instrumentalist Polly Scattergood as sensitive or worse still ‘kooky’ at first glance. With her flaxen locks, sweetly emotive voice and child like face, she looks as if she’s just stepped out of the pages of a fairy tale, but her songs are anything but. Unless of course you’re reading the Brothers Grimm or Angela Carter. >Signed to Mute records, this is her debut album and at just 21, one to be proud off. It features her recent single ‘Other Too Endless’ a stand out track about the gauntlet of thoughts and words after a lovers tiff set to a pounding beat, which was Steve Lamacq’s Record of the Week on his show. Polly’s songs delve headfirst into the darkness and brute pain of love, the forlorn lament of lost ghosts all to delicate ethereal sprawls of sound ( Untitled 27), sheer fizzy pop (Nitrogen Pink) and righteous pounding drums ( I Hate The Way). It takes a girl with a vivid imagination to sing of imaginings akin to scenes in a shadowy bordello, as stirred up by the track the Bunny Club with it’s lyrics of spitting on French knickers. Like Kate Bush and folk chanteuse Suzanne Vega who have trod the singer songwriter path before her, Polly is a story teller, and clearly in love with words as much as she is with sound. For a debut, where she has played guitars, synths, piano herself, this is self assured and promising - and while a churlish soul could criticise her for girlish fixation on lovelorn lament and paranoia as pegged just beyond the end of I Hate The Way, you could argue at 21 this is the world through her eyes and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. Being in love can be a complete nightmare. Imaginings at this age are playful, hopeful, funny, sad, angry and there are wolves out there in the shadows. Her songs speak of this and mostly it works very well, but there is a redolent sweetness in the melody of Please Don’t Touch that sits uneasily with other passionate songs, but to fail to see beyond that to the incredibly engaging sheer good stuff on this record such as the beauty and lyrical simplicity of I Am Strong  and the effervescent infectious joy of Nitrogen Pink would be cutting off your nose to spite your face, and that would be a crying shame. This is an ardent, honest album to be celebrated. Rating: 8/10