Florence + the Machine Conquers U.S.

English chantress, Florence Welch, performed her hit “Dog Days Are Over” here and “Cosmic Love” from her debut album, Lungs, with her band The Machine Tuesday for day two of the Colbert Report music week.

Florence + the Machine have had so much exposure on television, anticipation for her Colbert performance might have been ho-hum. Her performances on the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards, Ellen, Letterman, Kimmel, Saturday Night Live, and the 53rd Grammy awards Aretha Franklin tribute with Yolanda Adams, Christina Aguilera, Jennifer Hudson, and Martina McBride here are but a few over the past 12 months.

But take a look at “Cosmic Love” here and perhaps you’ll agree that Florence is a unique and driven artist who delivers a one-of-a-kind performance every time. Her choice of instrumentation and arrangements delivering the theatric songs she writes, set her apart from just about every American female artist on the charts.

Florence’s music is a perfect example of the peculiar disparity between English and American pop. She was an instant hit in England thanks to the exposure provided by BBC Introducing — the new music brand that can be found on most BBC radio stations in the UK. The subsequent release of six singles from Lungs and many Brit awards cemented her popularity there. But America was a different story. Though “Dog Days Are Over” was embraced by a significant base of hip fans, it took many months for the quirky song to begrudgingly make it’s way on U.S. radio.

It hasn’t helped that Florence + the Machine has not put in the kind of extensive touring most U.S. artists and bands take for granted as a prerequisite for success. Florence, who suffers from dyslexia, depression, and insomnia prefers to avoid extended road trips far away from home. Nevertheless, she forges ahead currently working to finish her sophomore studio album. See the new video of her cover of Buddy Holly’s “Not Fade Away” from the recently released all star tribute album here.


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