Piece by Piece (Katie Melua album)

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Piece by Piece
Studio album by Katie Melua
Released 26 September 2005
Recorded 2004-05
Genre Jazz, Blues
Length 44:32
Label Dramatico
Producer Mike Batt
Katie Melua chronology
Call off the Search
(2003)
Piece By Piece
(2005)
Pictures
(2007)
Singles from Piece by Piece
  1. "Nine Million Bicycles"
    Released: 19 September 2005
  2. "I Cried for You"
    Released: 2005
  3. "Spider's Web"
    Released: 17 April 2006
  4. "It's Only Pain"
    Released: 11 September 2006
  5. "Shy Boy"
    Released: 20 November 2006
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars[1]
Rolling Stone 2/5 stars[2]

Piece by Piece is the second studio album by British-Georgian jazz and blues singer Katie Melua. It was released on 26 September 2005 by Dramatico Records.

Its first single, "Nine Million Bicycles", became Melua's first top five hit in the UK and caused controversy when science writer Simon Singh said the lyrics "demonstrates a deep ignorance of cosmology and no understanding of the scientific method". After an amusing and good-natured debate in the Press Melua eventually recorded Singh's version, which both agreed was scientifically accurate and musically pathetic.[3]

The second single was a double A-side comprising "I Cried for You" and a cover of The Cure's "Just Like Heaven". The former song was written after Melua met the writer of The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail and is about Jesus and Mary Magdalene, while the latter was recorded for the soundtrack to the film Just Like Heaven. The single peaked outside the UK top twenty, and the album's third single, "Spider's Web" (which Melua wrote when she was eighteen, during the Iraq war) did not reach the top forty.

Melua wrote the title song "Piece By Piece" after she broke up with her boyfriend Luke Pritchard, and "Half Way up the Hindu Kush" was written by Katie and Mike Batt as a joke playing on the innuendo implicit in the title phrase, which cropped up in a conversation about scarves on a train journey. Katie wrote the chorus and Mike the verses. Alongside covers of "Blues in the Night" and Canned Heat's "On the Road Again", the album includes "Thankyou, Stars", which was previously released as a B-side on Melua's debut single "The Closest Thing To Crazy" in 2003.

The album was re-released in 2006, as Piece By Piece: Special Bonus Edition, with three additional tracks and a bonus DVD with concert Moment by Moment and promo videos.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Shy Boy" (Mike Batt) – 3:22
  2. "Nine Million Bicycles" (Mike Batt) – 3:15
  3. "Piece By Piece" (Katie Melua) – 3:24
  4. "Halfway Up The Hindu Kush" (Katie Melua, Mike Batt) – 3:06
  5. "Blues in the Night" (Harold Arlen, Johnny Mercer) – 4:12
  6. "Spider's Web" (Katie Melua) – 3:58
  7. "Blue Shoes" (Mike Batt) – 4:39
  8. "On The Road Again" (Floyd Jones, Alan Wilson) – 4:38
  9. "Thankyou, Stars" (Mike Batt) – 3:39
  10. "Just Like Heaven" (Robert Smith, Porl Thompson, Simon Gallup, Lol Tolhurst, Boris Williams) – 3:35
  11. "I Cried For You" (Katie Melua) – 3:38
  12. "I Do Believe In Love" (Katie Melua) – 3:00
  13. "It's Only Pain" (Mike Batt) (Special Bonus Edition track)
  14. "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds" (Acoustic version) (Lennon–McCartney) (Special Bonus Edition track)
  15. "Sometimes When I'm Dreaming" (Mike Batt) (Special Bonus Edition track)

Variants[edit]

A special edition for Spanish department store El Corte Inglés had additional tracks - Spanish language versions of "Closest Thing to Crazy" ("Esa Clase de Locura") and "Faraway Voice" (aka "Otra vez tu").

The USA release had two extra tracks (but not the Special Bonus edition tracks), "Jack's Room" and "Market Day in Guernica".

Chart performance[edit]

In the United Kingdom, the album debuted at #1 with 120,459 copies sold in its first week.[4]

Personnel[edit]

  • Vocals: Katie Melua
  • Guitars: Katie Melua, Chris Spedding, Jim Cregan
  • Piano: Mike Batt (Katie Melua on "I Do Believe in Love")
  • Bass: Tim Harries
  • Drums: Henry Spinetti
  • Solo Trumpet: Dominic Glover
  • Solo violin: Mike Darcy
  • Percussion: Martin Ditchman, Chris Karan
  • Harmonica: Paul Jones ("Blues in the Night")
  • Ethnic flutes: Adrian Brett ("Nine Million Bicycles")
  • Mandolin: Peter Knight ("Thankyou, Stars")
  • Sitar: Craig Pruess ("Halfway up the Hindu Kush")
  • Orchestra: The Irish Film Orchestra - Conductor: Mike Batt

Production[edit]

  • Producer: Mike Batt
  • Engineer: Steve Sale
  • Arranger: Mike Batt
  • Photography: Simon Fowler

References[edit]

  1. ^ AllMusic review
  2. ^ Rolling Stone review
  3. ^ Simon Singh (2005-09-30). "Simon Singh: Katie Melua's bad science | Education". The Guardian. Retrieved 2014-01-10. 
  4. ^ "Music Week". Music Week. Retrieved 2014-01-10. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Steffen Hung. "Katie Melua - Piece By Piece". charts.org.nz. Retrieved 2012-03-05. 
  6. ^ "Official Retail Sales Chart - sales for the period 18.09.2006 - 24.09.2006". OLiS. Retrieved 2013-09-20. 
  7. ^ "Austrian album certifications – Katie Melua – Piece by Piece" (in German). IFPI Austria.  Enter Katie Melua in the field Interpret. Enter Piece by Piece in the field Titel. Select album in the field Format. Click Suchen
  8. ^ "Ultratop − Goud en Platina – 2007". Ultratop & Hung Medien / hitparade.ch. 
  9. ^ "Danish album certifications – Katie Melua – Piece by Piece". IFPI Denmark. 
  10. ^ "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank (Katie Melua; 'Piece by Piece')" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie. 
  11. ^ "Irish album certifications – Katie Melua – Piece by Piece". Irish Recorded Music Association. 
  12. ^ "Dutch album certifications – Katie Melua – Piece by Piece" (in Dutch). Nederlandse Vereniging van Producenten en Importeurs van beeld- en geluidsdragers. 
  13. ^ "New Zealand album certifications – Katie Melua – Piece by Piece". Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. 
  14. ^ "Norwegian album certifications – Katie Melua – Piece by Piece" (in Norwegian). IFPI Norway. 
  15. ^ "Polish album certifications – Katie Melua – Piece by Piece" (in Polish). Polish Producers of Audio and Video (ZPAV). 
  16. ^ "The Official Swiss Charts and Music Community: Awards (Katie Melua; 'Piece by Piece')". Hung Medien. 
  17. ^ "British album certifications – Katie Melua – Piece by Piece". British Phonographic Industry.  Enter Piece by Piece in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select album in the field By Format. Select Platinum in the field By Award. Click Search
  18. ^ "IFPI Platinum Europe Awards – 2006". International Federation of the Phonographic Industry. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Life in Slow Motion
by David Gray
UK number one album
1 October 2005 – 8 October 2005
Succeeded by
You Could Have It So Much Better
by Franz Ferdinand