Monday, December 28, 2009

Music I've Listened To: "Acid Tongue," by Jenny Lewis

Wandering off from the more upbeat melodies of "Under the Black Light" down a dusty road filled with twang and sexually-charged energy, Jenny Lewis pays homage to the likes of late Johnny Cash and even good ol' Dolly with the album "Acid Tongue."

This album is much darker in tone than "Rabbit Fur Coat," evoking some pretty twisted imagery as the guitar strums right along with Lewis' signature coo. We get hints of drug use, sexual frustration, and even suicide contemplation from her here--it's as though she took these minor hints off of "Under The Black Light"'s tracks and decided to come right out and declare them in a different form, and alt. country seems the perfect fit.

Some great appearances from M. Ward, Zooey Deschanel, and Elvis Costello make the album absolutely sublime and set the tone perfectly. Every track seems to recall mistakes made or lovers lost, and Lewis really hits a vocal stride here and gives us the full spectrum of her abilities. This is the kind of music you want on a night of bad karaoke in the wrong part of town in some dive cowboy bar where it's just you and the whiskey-slinging bartender reminiscing about how life used to be (if it ever really was like that).

Self-reflexive tracks like "Pretty Bird" and the album's title track show us there's definitely more going on in Lewis' head than the usual boot-stomping country stuff, and that this is only the beginning.

Go Download: "Acid Tongue," "Pretty Bird," "Black Sand"

3.5/5 starxx

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