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New album 'exotic' for Ellis-Bextor

Sophie Ellis-Bextor was inspired by exotic influences for her fifth album Wanderlust: Photo © New album 'exotic' for Ellis-Bextor Photo

Sophie Ellis-Bextor has revealed that her jaunts to Eastern Europe inspired her new album Wanderlust.

The Strictly Come Dancing finalist has swapped her usual electro-pop sound for chamber-style music for her fifth album, which is released on January 20.

"It's a different sound and I'm keen to hear what people think of it. The album was finished before even deciding to do Strictly Come Dancing, but I think I used the same part of my brain with it in that I wanted to do something different," she told Digital Spy.

"It's inspired by doing all the stuff you can't do in dance music. I was inspired by my trips to Eastern Europe, by the Russian fairytales I read when I was little. Throw in some Twin Peaks, a Bulgarian choir and you have the album!"

The Murder On The Dancefloor singer continued: "I've been travelling to that part of the world for a while now and in many ways it feels quite untouched and exotic. Once me and my producer Ed [Harcourt] had stumbled upon this sound, it really struck a chord with us."

Sophie - who finished fourth in the BBC dance show with partner Brendan Cole - said she would return to her dance roots in the future.

"I still have a dance album in me, for sure," she said. "I've always been a bit of a kid in a candy store with music, gorging on something and then suddenly moving on to something else.

"I started out as an indie artist then did dance with Groovejet. I always get stupidly excited by dance music, but I'm enjoying doing something different for now. I had to be strict that this album would be very different as I didn't see the point in doing it half-heartedly."

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