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Great American Gingerbread

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Album Review

The compilation Great American Gingerbread is subtitled "Rasputina Rarities & Neglected Items." Melora Creager's cello-based group is already idiosyncratic enough on its regular releases that the thought of an album pulling together its oddities seems like doubling down on quirkiness. And so it is, from the group's 2004 demo of the Kinks' "I Go to Sleep" to the unused demo of "Death at Disneyland," which begins as chamber music only to give way to an electric guitar solo. That's one of several instrumentals, including "Loom" and the nearly 12-minute "On My Knees" (the title a reference to the cello, it is to be hoped!). Those are among the more conventional inclusions. And the most unconventional? Probably "Mystery Man-Monkey," which finds Creager reading news reports about, yes, a "man-monkey" terrorizing the countryside, over a track featuring fanciful monkey sounds. Of course, this is a collection for dedicated fans of Rasputina, especially those who feel that the group has never gone quite far enough.


Formed: 1992

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s

The New York City-based trio Rasputina was led by singer/songwriter Melora Creager, a classically-trained cellist who backed Nirvana on the group's final tour. In 1992, Creager placed a want ad seeking other cellists to form a rock band; among those responding was Canadian musician Julia Kent, and with the later addition of Polish native Agnieszka Rybska, Rasputina was born. The three cellists' image further developed by the addition of tightly-laced vintage Victorian costumes, their gothic chamber-pop...
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Great American Gingerbread, Rasputina
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