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Banga

Patti Smith

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iTunes Editors' Notes

Eight years after her last album of original material, Patti Smith returns with a collection that's among the most musical of her career. She's certainly earned her revered-elder status, having recently won the National Book Award for nonfiction for her memoir Just Kids—but Banga is no exercise in nostalgia. The Italian group Casa del Vento and guitarists Tom Verlaine and Jack Petruzzelli add a musicality that's sometimes been missing in her punkish approach. "Amerigo" features Smith's spoken word, beginning with Europe's discovery of America as the New World. "April Fool" enjoys a wealth of tonal colors from guitars and keyboards. "This Is the Girl" and "Maria" follow in Smith's tradition of feting icons, with the tender ballads memorializing, respectively, Amy Winehouse and the late actress Maria Schneider. The title track plays as fierce, tribal rock 'n' roll, though much of the album uses a subtler approach. "Mosaic" modifies the tribal effect with a gentleness that's Smith's true forte. Her cover of Neil Young's "After the Gold Rush" is a reverent rendition that Smith sings in her lower range, where Young once sang it at the top of his. 

Biography

Born: 30 December 1946 in Chicago, IL

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Punk rock's poet laureate Patti Smith ranks among the most influential female rock & rollers of all time. Ambitious, unconventional, and challenging, Smith's music was hailed as the most exciting fusion of rock and poetry since Bob Dylan's heyday. If that hybrid remained distinctly uncommercial for much of her career, it wasn't a statement against accessibility so much as the simple fact that Smith followed her own muse wherever it took her — from structured rock songs to free-form experimentalism,...
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