Saturday, August 7th, 2004
The Boston Phoenix talks to Tanya Donelly about how the state of her personal life informs her latest record, Whiskey Tango Ghosts. This album has gotten some lukewarm reviews for being so quiet and spare and such a departure from the buoyant pop with which she became an alterna-icon in the early 90s. True, it’s less poppy than anything she’s done in the past, but it’s also not as MOR mom-rock as Beautysleep was. Tanya’s voice is lovely as always (the a capella untitled closing track is stunning), but there’s an undercurrent of somberness and unease that’s more prevelant in this record than in the past (reasons for which are alluded to in the above-linked article). Tanya’s work has always had a degree of darkness in it, but it usually manifested itself in slightly off-kilter but charmingly whimsical imagery. This time, it’s much starker and more intimate affair that has an extra emotional depth, making it that much more resonant for the listener. I’m quite pleasantly surprised by how much I’m liking this record. However, if angsty Tanya isn’t to your liking (and she’s not really angsty), she’ll have another record out sooner rather than later. The next album will consist of songs that didn’t fit the mood of WTG and be recorded live in front of an audience at the end of the month during a couple shows in Vermont.
An excellent bootleg of Wilco’s show this past Tuesday in Toronto has surfaced. You’ll need a Bit Torrent client (I recommend Torrent Storm) and something to uncompress .FLAC files (I use FLAC Frontend), but the net result are lovely uncompressed audio files of the whole show, courtesy of local show-taper extraordinaire David Klein. David – if you read this and want some pics for CD artwork, shoot me a line. Thanks to Another Frank for the tip-off yesterday. And as a postscript, I heard from a dude who heard from a dude that Wilco would be back sooner rather than later at Massey Hall. Just. As. I. Predicted.
Some concert news – It’s like a freaking UK invasion this Fall. To begin:
After opening for Ted Leo back in March, Electrelane will headline their own show at the Horseshoe September 4. Not long after, Neil Hannon and The Divine Comedy will play the oh-so elegant ‘Shoe on September 15, tickets $13.
And on the market saturation end of things, The Delays (who were here barely two weeks ago) have been added to the Franz Ferdinand show at the Docks October 1 (their third in Toronto this year) along with The Futureheads. And only three months after their debut show at Lee’s Palace, Hope Of The States is coming back to play the Opera House on October 4, tickets $15.
And finally, non-British citizen Jon Spencer is in town November 9 at the Phoenix to explode some blues all over your asses. $20.
And now I’m off to a wedding… which I just realized will be a Catholic service. Oh maaaaan. Is it bad form to bring a book? Or a pillow? Why can’t everyone just have United Church weddings? They’re like the McDonalds drive-throughs of matrimony. “Do you? Do you? You’re married. NEXT!”