August 12, 2003

Sew Your Fortune on a String

The New Yorker on Cat Power.

an excerpt:

"It is foolhardy to describe a Cat Power event as a concert. A concert involves the playing of music or songs in some kind of order, with short breaks and maybe a little patter in between. The form works: it allows the entertainer some distance, so that she can perform without becoming too involved in the audience’s response. At Castle Clinton, Marshall reversed that order. The set lasted approximately an hour and ten minutes, during which time she talked to a friend’s baby from the stage; asked no one in particular if the photographer Mark Borthwick was in the house; talked about her friends who had brought the baby; directed a fair amount of bemused antagonism toward a particularly ardent fan; asked someone offstage how many minutes were left in the set; sang a bit of rap from 'The Teaches of Peaches,' an album that was an underground hit last summer; smoked a couple of cigarettes; played with her hair; took her large sunglasses on and off; indulged in rambling confessions; and complained about the length of one tune from her current album, 'You Are Free,' before singing an abbreviated version of it.
...
" At the close of her set, she grabbed the mike and walked up and down the center aisle like a preacher at a revival meeting, singing, cigarette in hand, Black Sabbath’s 'Black Sabbath.' Watching her, you tumbled down a well of longing and hope. Marshall looked as if she had been painted en plein air, a fluid version of Liberty standing guard over the Harbor. Her voice in that song was the blues sound of trouble in mind everywhere. "

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