Ella Henderson debut album review – ‘Chapter One’

Posted on 16 October 2014
By Amy Shaw
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Back in 2012 we saw 16 year old Ella Henderson appear on our screens on The X Factor, proving to have a huge voice that managed to reduce Nicole Scherzinger to tears.

The young starlet has been holed up in the studio for two years before immersing back into the public, a wish granted by recording company Syco who clearly agreed that this would benefit the release.

Unlike some previous contestants who are in a hurry to put out a single to quickly cash in on public interest, Ella is a talented songwriter and passionate about her craft.

This was made evident right from the word go as she sang a song penned by herself, ‘Missed’ in her first X Factor audition which now features on her album – a beautifully chilling song set to just piano and strings.

From the beginning it was clear that Ella is unlike any other X Factor contestant, as the girl seemed set in her identity, who she wanted to be and what kind music she wished to make.

After her debut single ‘Ghost’ shot straight to number one on the UK charts it was no surprise that her album would follow the same success. The second single to be taken from the album is ‘Glow’ is enchanting and carries a magical tone that is complemented by Ella’s huge voice.

The album is dominated by ballads, but is a far cry from depressing or sorrowful. Slower songs throughout the album are poignant and heartfelt, with lyrics reference to Ella’s own life.

‘1996’ is a track directly about the songstress, boasting the opening lyric – ‘At ten past three in the afternoon, in 1996 an eight pound baby arrived, that was me’. These playful lyrics add to the authentic and personal tone of the album, aptly named ‘Chapter One’.

One of the strongest tracks on the album is easily power ballad ‘Empire’ with delicate verses and an empowering chorus, perfect for those long winter walks home in the cold accompanied by just your gloves and your headphones, trying to rival the perfect vocals of Ella.

Above all, Chapter One is a reminder that if handled correctly and nurtured with care, real talent and brilliant music can still be produced from TV talent shows.