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This Is It and I Am It and You Are It and So Is That and He Is It and She Is It and It Is It and That Is That

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iTunes Review

Shred guitar heroine Marnie Stern reaches sublime heights on her sophomore album This Is It and I am It… Her startling fusion of heavy metal histrionics and art-rock minimalism suggests some far-flung reference points, including Yngwie Malmstein, Captain Beefheart, and Throwing Muses. But really, Stern is sui generis, too unique a creature to fit any pigeonhole. Her furious finger-tapping technique and deconstructionist approach to melody is matched with a cheerful vocal style and metaphysically inclined lyric content. The whole thing comes to ferocious life in these raucously joyful tracks aided immensely by the brilliant jazz-inflected playing of drummer Zach Hill. Staccato note-stabs and manic tempo shifts whip the listener about like a souped-up carnival ride on “Prime” and “Simon Says.” Subtleties emerge as the tracks unfold, such as the off-kilter jig rhythms within “Shea Stadium” and the Motown-like bounce running through “The Crippled Jazzer.” “Vault” approaches arena rock grandeur, while “Transformer” clatters with the exalted delight of a Buddhist percussion orchestra. Stern seems intent on using her music to shock the mind into bedazzled awareness.

Customer Reviews


I've never heard of Marnie Stern, but I'll never forget her after this album. This is incredibly hooky, with more angular guitar than you can shake a stick at. Catchy as hell but impossible to sing along to, This Is most likely going to end up in the top 10 of most critics' polls this year.

This Is It... the album of the year!

With "This is It and I am It and..." Marnie Stern builds on the "most interesting new artist/exciting new shredder" hype she recieved from 07's In Advance of the Broken Arm, adding better song writing, crazier guitar parts, toned down drumming (it doesn't sound like Zach Hill is trying to make this the Zach Hill and Marnie Stern album this time), and in general a better flowing album. While there isn't anything as immediately mind blowing as last album's Vibrational Match, the songs are over all better. From Prime, to Ruler, to The Devil's In The Details. Haven't herad the bonus tracks yet (bummer that people supporting the small businesses don't get extra songs, oh well, can't win em all), but i'm guessing they are pretty good too. Also, "Roads? Where we're going We don't need roads" gets the Back to the Future reference and Song Title of the Year award. Right? Fans of Hella, Mick Barr, Van Halen, Classic Rock, Deerhoof, Yoko Ono, and just interesting, weird, catchy music are going to love this one.

Very Tight, Very Cool

This album is raw, but clean at the same time. The music is really tight; I love the sound, and the drummer does a really great job, playing a pivotal part to the music. Really cool drumming. I love the frantic, shrieking guitars. I would most definitely count Deerhoof as one of their influences.


Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

It wasn't until she was 23, when she heard Sleater-Kinney for the first time, that Marnie Stern's life began to take her in the direction of the noise- and punk-inspired experimental rock that would later define her music. She soon began learning finger-tapping techniques on her electric guitar and assiduously began practicing and recording songs until she had enough for a demo. Stern sent the tape to Kill Rock Stars, which immediately signed the young singer/guitarist to their 5RC imprint. The folding...
Full Bio
This Is It and I Am It and You Are It and So Is That and He Is It and She Is It and It Is It and That Is That, Marnie Stern
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