Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Thalia...back with a fury

This is unusual, three days, three reviews at Dusted...the last is the new one from Thalia Zedek, Via

Thalia Zedek
Thrill Jockey

Thalia Zedek’s solo career has, to date, been a more muted affair than her full-band dalliances with Uzi, Live Skull and Come, surrounding her sandpapered, survivor’s rasp with piano, drums and, particularly, David Michael Curry’s wild, emotionally charged violin-playing. Then with 2008’s Liars and Prayers, the no-wave icon began turning up the volume, her ravaged voice surfing over roiling tides of dissonant guitar. In Via, she continues her journey back into rock abandon, beginning in the relative clarity of first single, “Walk Away,” and ending up in the maelstrom breakdown of closer “Want You To Know.”
Zedek worked with two drummers this time, first with Daniel Coughlin, a long-time fixture on her solo work and also Come’s old drummer, and later, Dave Bryson who is best known for his work with Son Volt. The rest of her band is familiar – Curry on violin and Mel Lederson on piano. Zedek herself plays guitar and sings, as usual.
I’m not sure you can attribute the shift toward more chaotic, untrammeled rock and roll to a mid-album switch in drummers, so let’s lay it at Zedek’s feet. She, after all, spends most of the album singing about the past’s long reach, its way of reappearing suddenly as long-dormant relationships re-animate, or its surprising power to shape people, events and emotions. It’s not much of a jump to imagine her backward look leading to the heavy guitars, the irregular rhythms, the pummeling overload of her 1980s and ’90s work. Zedek’s past is not a light or easy thing, either personally or musically, and neither is Via.



In other news, I finally gave up and joined Facebook.  I'm still not sure how the whole thing works, but my profile page is here, and I'm pretty easy about friending people. 

The other thing that happened yesterday was pretty great.  Sean got into another BFA acting program, this one at CCPA/Roosevelt, which is a very legitimate, Chicago-based, theater-centric program...certainly a vindication of the whole audition-school adventure that we embarked on after he got rejected from Northwestern.  I hope we'll have enough money for it.  I hope we don't have to sell the house.  But that's two performance-based programs that want him based on his acting ability...and a lot more positive response than he's gotten for his academics.  (Which are not bad.  4.4 weighted GPA, 5th in his class, 2020 SATs...but not good enough.) 

I can't believe what this society does to its kids.  It's criminal. 


Jean-Luc Garbo said...

That is cool news about your son!

Your review of Zedek's record makes me very excited to listen to it. I wasn't sure what to expect from this one. My sister also loves Zedek and those two lyrics you highlighted from 'Walk Away' would resonate with her. She should find your review really helpful. I liked that Kinski review, too. I hadn't given them much thought before other than my love for the actor! I shared it with my girlfriend because "one of the best guitar rock albums of the year" is what she digs and that struck me as high praise indeed from you.

jenniferpkelly said...

That Kinski is awesome, I love that, respect the Zedek. Both are well worth a listen.

This college acceptance process is unbelievably brutal. You can't believe how awful it is until you go through it with someone you love.