Friday, September 23, 2011


Song: Cruel
Artist: St. Vincent
Album: Strange Mercy

Friend and reader Andrew introduced me to St. Vincent, aka Annie Clark, and her previous release, 2009's "Actor."  I liked the record, found it quirky and chock full of layers that unfolded with each listen.  Much the same could be said about her latest offering, "Strange Mercy," which came out just last week.

The music is hard to describe as it contains elements of rock, electronic, and touches of orchestral instrumentation.  (Some call her "baroque pop") The song structures aren't straight-forward, as evidence by the very first, stuttering track, the durge-y "Chloe in the Afternoon."  I really really like second track "Cruel," which has an infectious guitar lick, awash in reverb.  It's got a tiny march-like quality to it, as well as off-kilter production, and of course St. Vincent's crooning.  A bit of guitar feedback and even romantic, sweeping strings somehow are all thrown in and it works.  Pretty amazing.

I'm still digesting this, but have been surprised at this AM's listening as while I've listened to it a handful of times at work, today was the first time I realized the songs had worked their way under my skin.  A female-fronted rock record with an edge.


Chloe in the Afternoon

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