LxListening: Four Ladies and a Little Man

This post is kind of like this…but not at all.

For this week’s Lxlistening, I wanted to highlight several tracks that have come out this year whose album we failed to review.  Even though each album was noteworthy enough for me to go, “Hey guys, I’m gonna review this”, for some reason reviewing another album (or life in general) got in the way.  Good or bad (mostly good), I hoped this week to give you a some brief feelings on the album as well as the chosen track.  And yes, surprise surprise, my focus is mostly on strong female singers this week.  But hey, even the only man on the list is attracted to dudes, so I have some semblance of a theme.  Here we go.

Bat for Lashes – “Laura”

I was a bit non-plussed by Natasha Khan’s latest album, The Haunted Man, under her stage-name Bat for Lashes.  The Haunted Man lacked focus, as well as song structures easy to latch onto.  The big exception is “Laura”, a simple piano ballad showing the strength and range of Khan’s voice, along her lyrical prowess.  The Haunted Man as a whole may not be in constant rotation for me, but “Laura” certainly is.  And who knows, maybe the album will grow on me.

Cat Power – “Nothin’ But Time”

I feel like a real putz for not getting around to review Cat Power’s latest, Sun.  The album is delightful, and that is a word I rarely use.  The almost solely-electronic nature of Sun was a shocking departure from anything else in Chan Marshall’s catalog.  The standout, among many other great tracks, is “Nothin’ But Time”.  This revelation has a repetitive, but effective, build crescendo-ing in back-up vocals by who else but….Iggy Pop!

Jessie Ware – “Wildest Moments”

I have only been able to invest a minimal amount of time in Jessie Ware’s debut, Wildest Moments.  There is no doubt that I will carve out some time for the album, based on the strength of the title track alone, which seems like an introduction to an artist that could end up making a big mark on pop music in the next several years.

Perfume Genius – “Normal Song”

Being introduced to Mike Hadreas’ solo project, Perfume Genius, is like being introduced to a brick wall of emotions.  If you are in a great mood, Hadreas’ work will most likely take you in a very different direction.  If you are in a horrible mood, have someone hide your belts and razor blades.  All that being said, Hadreas’ understated, bite-sized, tracks are beautifully constructed.  “Normal Song” offers a respite of hope on a pretty dark album, and is a fantastic introduction.

AlunaGeorge – “Your Drums, Your Love”

I think I included an AlunaGeorge track on my very first Lxlistening post…almost a year ago.  The Brit duo still hasn’t released a full-length album, but “Your Drums, Your Love”  continues to wet my whistle.  Between Aluna’s sultry vocals, and George’s sick production, AlunaGeorge’s full-length debut, whenever it may come out, is one of my most anticipated upcoming albums.

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