Winehouse father finds posthumous new album painful

Fri Dec 2, 2011 7:56am EST
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By Mike Collett-White and Sarah Mills

LONDON (Reuters) - Amy Winehouse's posthumous new album "Lioness: Hidden Treasures" hits stores on Monday, but the one fan who will find it hardest to listen is her father.

Mitch Winehouse, who has set up a charity in his daughter's name after she died in July aged 27, heard the collection of 12 songs recorded from as early as 2002, a year before the release of her debut album "Frank."

But he said the experience had been "difficult," with the memories of the late chart topper still raw.

"We were finding it difficult to listen to Amy's music, but we had to listen to it because if it wasn't up to scratch we wouldn't have allowed it to go out," Mitch told Reuters in a recent interview.

"We weren't pleasantly surprised. We were stunned at how wonderful the album is. (But) at the moment I can't listen to it. In the years to come I will be able to and people have to make their own minds up."

Early reviews of the album, released on Universal Music's Island Records label, have been mixed.

"It was clearly a bit of struggle to cobble together the material for this album," said Alexis Petridis of the Guardian newspaper in a three-out-of-five star rating.

Helen Brown of the Telegraph wrote: "The random scrappiness of this collection of alternative takes, covers and sketchy new material is made poignant by the context in which it has been released.   Continued...