[people] I am one of Amazon's profitable idiots, one of them who smiles his honor when it flashes "Hello, Siri, we have recommendations for you" as I log in to their site. Whenever I threw whatever it was they had to recommend to me in the shopping cart, I always get seduced when I read that "those who bought this, also bought that". Because then I can't be any worse than everyone else, like?
That's how it forms well-nourished minuses on the Visa card and unintended trends in my record collection, and right now I'm really out to drive. For how many crazy, brilliant ladies and men is there really room for an otherwise awkwardly prosaic home?
The worst thing is that they know each other, all these artists who gradually fill my CD shelf and have been classified under the term New Weird America. This makes it even more difficult to send just a few of them to the door. Toe
Devendra Banhart, for example. With the album with the not very short title Oh Me Oh My… The Way the Day Goes by the Sun Is Setting Dogs Are Dreaming Lovesongs of the Christmas Spirit in 2002 and then the compilation album The Golden Apples of the Sun (2004) he has become a leader -
figure within New Weird America. He appeared as a guest vocalist on one of last year's most acclaimed albums, Antony and the Johnsons' I Am A Bird Now. In return, Antony (Hegarty) himself contributed a trolley to Noah's Ark, the second album of the Casady sisters, also known as CocoRosie. And – hold on – Bianca Casady is in love with Devendra, so that circle was over.
As far as I know, Regina Spektor is neither boyfriend nor best friend with any of the above, but is definitely a sister in the spirit of CocoRosie and the gang. Her new album Mary Ann Meets the Gravediggers and Other Short Stories is a patch on the wound of anyone who has struggled to get hold of her two previous releases, which were released on their own company and with small distribution. The title of the song "Consequence of Sounds" can stand as a language of choice for most of what they do, the whole new weird hurve, namely to rummage around in all sorts of vocal soundscapes while telling a mysterious story only a four-year-old could find the thread in At her best, Regina Spektor sounds like Rickie Lee Jones drunk, trapped in an attic with a dusty grand piano, burning candelabra and a magnificent morbid imagination. At its worst, it just gets weird.
Interested? Check these out:
Mary Ann Meets the Gravediggers (Transgressive Records 2006) Music for the Twelfth Hour.
Noah's Ark (Touch & Go 2005)
Blend-washed little devils with highlights from the Bible.
Various artists The Golden Apples of the Sun (Bastet, 2004) The Rough Guide to New Weird America, simply.
Kunstbladet released the compilation album The Golden Apples of the Sun.