Album cover artwork for Natalie Imbruglia with black vinyl record popping out“Is everything broken?” Natalie Imbruglia asks at the start of her sixth album, her first collection of original material in 12 years.

Whatever way you look at it, it’s been a spectacular career, from Neighbours to millions of record sales, movies, ARIAs, Brit Awards and Grammy nominations. But you also sense it’s a career cursed by a classic debut and forever chasing that pop perfection. “It’s been a lifetime building walls,” Imbruglia sings in Just Like Old Times. “I’m just trying to find a way to make peace with myself.”

Firebird is a pop journey of discovery – “I need to find myself to lose myself again” – and though nothing quite matches Torn’s brilliance, Imbruglia’s pure vocal remains a thing of beauty – check out the glorious simplicity of the title track, and When You Love Too Much.

Firebird by Natalie Imbruglia is out Sep 24 via BMG.

Read our review of Kylie Minogue’s DISCO (2020).

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