The ShortListen: Rumer (no. 356)

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Dave Fawbert

Who? Rumer

What’s the story? The Carpenters are one of the greatest bands ever, and that is a stone-cold fact. While they haven't perhaps had the cultural reappraisal enjoyed by the likes of ABBA, no one can deny the brilliance of Karen Carpenter's voice, and the body of work that they produced. It takes a brave artist to tackle one of their most iconic songs, the Burt Bacharach and Hal David-penned classic (They Long to Be) Close to You but, luckily, if there's one modern singer with the purity of vocal to match Karen, it's the Brit-nominated singer Rumer.

She returns with her first new music since 2014's album Into Colour, with this track, premiering here on The ShortListen, recorded with accomplished arranger, composer and orchestrator, Rob Shirakbari. Of course, she's no stranger to the works of Bacharach, having been invited by the great man to his Californian home to sing for him in 2010 - which led to the single Rumer Sings Bacharach at Christmas. She even performed another of his songs, A House Is Not a Home, at the White House for Barack Obama in 2012. Naturally, Rumer's version of this Carpenters staple is elegant, respectful and powerful, reminding us just what a great song really sounds like.

For fans of: The Carpenters, Burt Bacharach

In three words: Luxurious classic cover

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Dave Fawbert acting editor Dave’s is famous for electropop, power ballads and urban snake wrangling. A lower division football enthusiast and long-suffering cricket fan, he is one of only 202 people followed on Twitter by Chas Hodges from Chas ‘n’ Dave. Follow Dave on Twitter like Chas: @davefawbert

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