Chan Marshall's live performances are always interesting. One of my high school English teachers once told me that while he was a Boston University undergrad, he saw her perform at the Middle East Upstairs. According to Mr. K, out of stagefright, Chan faced the back corner of the stage throughout the entire set. Eight years later, her shows are now set in less intimate venues, and her stage fright has dwindled, but the soft, beautiful music is intact.
Her latest release, Jukebox, just came out last week, and it rules. My favorite songs so far is "Song to Bobby", a song for Bob Dylan. Listen to it back-to-back with Bobby D's "Song to Woody", and you'll realize how awesome and powerful it is. There's one other original song on the album-- a sadder but stronger live version of "Metal Heart", which she originally released on Moon Pix about ten years ago. The rest of the Jukebox is comprised of covers, like "New York, New York", Dylan's "I Believe in You". Chan covers James Brown and Aretha Franklin, as well. It's all good stuff. Jukebox definitely doesn't top 2006's The Greatest, but it's for-sure her strongest covers ablum yet. Download some songs here, courtesy of Hype Machine: http://hypem.com/search/cat%20power/1/
Check out Cat Power @ Orpheum Theatre on February 7th. Tickets at ticketmaster.com.
(photo from matadorrecords.com)
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