Friday, April 10, 2009

Neko Case - Middle Cyclone

Canadian chanteuse Neko Case has settled on a farm in Vermont in recent years. As farms often do, this one had a barn that our Ms. C decided would be fun to fill with as many free pianos as they could get from Craigslist. They ended up with eight, six of which were patched into an impromptu piano orchestra that serves as the backbone to three of the Middle Cyclone tracks. 

There are 13 more tracks, fourteen if you count the half-hour of frog noises that closes the record. You'll be shocked to hear that the tracks are pretty wonderful. Nico's been on a Nilsson kick lately (Neko does Nilsson anyone?), so things are pretty lush production-wise. She covers Don't Forget Me, as well as the Sparks chestnut Never Turn Your Back On Mother Earth, but her stuff is as solid as you might expect. The usual Neko cronies of Kelly Hogan and the Bloodshot Mafia add their flair to the proceedings, as do Garth Hudson and Howe Gelb. Middle Cyclone is not going to win over any new fans, but if you're not a fan already, you've got issues larger than I care to deal with. The Pharoahs (a collabo with the Good Bros. of the Sadies) is my favorite track, but make your own call about the high points here. Pick up Middle Cyclone here from your friends at Anti. Neko's fuzzy little piece of the web is here. See her on tour with Crooked Fingers.


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