11 Songs, 40 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

After two previous releases, St. Vincent (a.k.a. Annie Clark) finds a way to channel her avant-garde instincts in more accessible directions, displaying a firm grasp on pop songwriting forms even as she subverts them. In tandem with producer John Congleton, she plays nervous industrial beats and quivering keyboards against billowing ‘60s-ish melodies. Her cooing vocals on “Cruel” and “Surgeon” insinuate dark scenarios of betrayal and abandonment, transcending mere irony into something palpably sinister. More direct in their intentions are “Cheerleader” (an anthem of personal liberation) and “Champagne Year” (a jaundiced look at success). If Clark’s lyrics tease and dazzle, her music hits hard sonically, clattering to a galloping groove on “Hysterical Strength” and erupting into guitar-fueled cacophony on “Northern Lights.” The otherworldly grandeur of Kate Bush or Björk is recalled on tracks like “Chloe In the Afternoon.” But St. Vincent is in a class all her own as she exorcises sexual demons, grapples with psychic breakdown, and achieves an uncanny catharsis.

EDITORS’ NOTES

After two previous releases, St. Vincent (a.k.a. Annie Clark) finds a way to channel her avant-garde instincts in more accessible directions, displaying a firm grasp on pop songwriting forms even as she subverts them. In tandem with producer John Congleton, she plays nervous industrial beats and quivering keyboards against billowing ‘60s-ish melodies. Her cooing vocals on “Cruel” and “Surgeon” insinuate dark scenarios of betrayal and abandonment, transcending mere irony into something palpably sinister. More direct in their intentions are “Cheerleader” (an anthem of personal liberation) and “Champagne Year” (a jaundiced look at success). If Clark’s lyrics tease and dazzle, her music hits hard sonically, clattering to a galloping groove on “Hysterical Strength” and erupting into guitar-fueled cacophony on “Northern Lights.” The otherworldly grandeur of Kate Bush or Björk is recalled on tracks like “Chloe In the Afternoon.” But St. Vincent is in a class all her own as she exorcises sexual demons, grapples with psychic breakdown, and achieves an uncanny catharsis.

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Ratings and Reviews

4.6 out of 5
442 Ratings
442 Ratings
B1LParaquat ,

A Labor of Love

If you can remember the first time you listened to an important record, a record that has followed you throughout your life, you probably recall that the experience wasn't easy at first. It started out bumpy and rocky. It sounded so foreign it was almost alien. The record knocked you around, and had it's way with you, but it unlocked your mind and handed you the key.

Over the years such a record has served you as a companion, a confidant and and a caretaker of your best and worst memories. All of the album's possibilities and limits were opened to you, and you were tamed and beholden, forever.

If you've never had a record do that for you, and this record doesn't do it for you, then good day and good luck.

seabass9 ,

Once You Get It, You'll Love It

At first, I had no interest in St. Vincent's music. I found it too awkward and discomfort for my listening pleasure. But after some encouragement, I decided to really try and fully envelop myself in her music. And you know what? I got it. I got the interest and the like for St. Vincent. Sure her music makes the listener feel a bit out of it, a bit strange, but that's what makes the music exciting to listen to. It may take a little while to become "comfortable" with St. Vincent's music, but once you do, you'll truly enjoy it. The same applies for much of today's great, indie music.

jobo22341 ,

what was thought to be impossible

Have I ever liked an artist's whole albumn before? yup. But I have never gone beyond this...until now. I have NEVER liked all the songs on 3 albumns of one artist. Her music is so unique and unlike todays so called "music" where all the songs sound the same with like 3 words. I actually heard her 2nd albumn first and I was captured and then I heard her 1st albumn and it was love at first sight and with this albumn I just want to go on an adventure. Trully an amazing artist!

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