Franka De Mille – Bridge the Roads

Chi Wara Music
London 2013

The CD arrived yesterday from London. Chi Wara Music had sent it through Royal Mail, which took 19 days to reach Austria. Amazing. Sydney is much further away, yet Australia Post is much faster. Chi Wara manage the in my part of the world unknown singer songwriter Franka De Mille, and they felt that she might be „of great interest to our readers“. Sounded a bit pushy, but it made me curious and we ordered her album for review anyway.

Franka De Mille’s debut „Bridge The Roads,“ we were told, has an elegant blend of Chamber music and Americana. Hm, what does this sound like? It was released physically in Germany and Austria via Universal Music on 29 March 2013 and has been attracting great (and some skeptical) reviews. Fair enough. Unfortunately I’ve never seen her in a live concert, so I played the CD all day on the stereo and judged by myself.

I must admit, I wasn’t immediately blown away by this London based singer songwriter. She sounded too much like this one or that one, when I really expected to hear something new. And the shallow „Come On“ was a bad choice as the opening track. But even though Franka De Mille’s voice is not unique in this sense, her music grows on you.

Skip the first couple of songs and you’ll get the reward of an intimate look through the window of her soul in „Gare Du Nord“. One wonders about the French words in an English song (perhaps to let us know she speaks the language), but somehow she gets away with it, and I even forgive that she has been compared to Patti Smith, Tori Amos, Kate Bush, etc. However, her marketing worked, for now I wanted to know more about this Franka De Mille. Under this name is no article in Wikipedia, and her age is nowhere to be found. I can only guess and wonder why her debut came about so mature.

Anyway, there’s something about Franka De Mille that makes me put this name on my bucket list of people I want to see in concert, and I look forward to listen to her next album. In a little animated film about her music, the enigmatic singer states „there’s no greater miracle than getting a second chance“. This makes me wonder even more about her life. Official website


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