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coverpic flag US - New York - Full Moon 43 - 04/18/00

Cat Power
The Covers Record
Matador

If you're keen on an evening by yourself accompanied only by some glasses of fine wine or good liquid, ready for some heavy tristesse, you should go for the latest Cat Power attempt. No kitty-kitty here, but you'd better be prepared for a solid "hangover". Caused by melancholic, not alcoholic spirits.

Cat Power a.k.a. vocalist/guitarist Chan Marshall has since her debut single Headlights in 1994 released 3 full albums: Myra Lee (on Steve Shelley's label Smells like Records) and What Would the Community Think (Matador) both came in 1996, before the acclaimed Moon Pix (Matador) in 1998. On her fourth album, The Covers Record, she plays what the title implies: cover songs. Songs by old-timers as 50's popper Phil Phillips, Bob Dylan, The Velvet Underground, The Rolling Stones, Moby Grape, and Nina Simone. And, for the younger, contemporary listener, Smog. Plus; she's included a version of her own In This Hole (from What Would the Community Think).

I guess the common Stones fan would become both shocked and pissed (suits me just fine!) when hearing her take on the "cock-rock hymn" (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction. Totally stripped. No chorus. No Jagger-swagger. Just Chan's voice and an acoustic guitar, which is the tread throughout the record. Totally nakedness.

Some of the songs included are Bob Dylan's Paths Of Victory and Kingsport Town (trad., but based on Dylan's version), both found on The Bootleg Series Volumes 1 - 3, a shorter (but not better) version of Lou Reed's love song I Found A Reason from Velvet Underground's Loaded album, Troubled Waters by Arthur Johnson/Sam Coslow, Smog a.k.a. Bill Callahan's Red Apples (the title track from his 1997 album), Moby Grape's Naked If I Want To (by Jerry A. Miller jr.), Sweedeedee by Michael Hurley, and Nina Simone's Wild Is The Wind (by Tiomkine/Washington). Highlites: the pleasantly surprising Satisfaction, the almost poppy Naked If I Want To, the dark and brooming Troubled Waters (and, well, also Red Apples), and Wild Is The Wind, which is the finest song on the album. But, as I mentioned, be careful not to O.D. on sadness and loneliness while listening.

Distribution in Norway: Tuba!

Copyright © 2000 Håvard Oppøyen e-mail address

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