I've been giving out about her since 2004 when a friend told me "Only cunts don't like joanna newsom" after I expressed some reservations about her. I dunno if I can stop giving out now, her very name brings out my inner troll but I'm gonna give this another listen in a minute and try to find things I like about it. This is the beer talking...
Good post on the previous page @GO. So far I feel the same about the lyrics, haven't broken through with them.
But I prefer her when she is just using vocals and an instrument like on Sprout and Bean or Peach, Plum, Bear. The orchestration here is too polished for me at the minute. A bit too disney. It actually reminds me on Tom & Jerry cartoons at times during Cosmia.
I have enjoyed listening though. I haven't heard The Milk-Eyed Mender in a long time, so I think I am going to go back to it and I'm interested in seeing how different the two albums are.
I don't think there is anything too crazy here either honestly. The beatles and neil young have already made pop tunes based around classical strings. Singing a song with the harp doesn't feel much different to singing with a piano to me.
And you have to say she has her harp chops down at the start of Sawdust & Diamonds. Gonna check out some live videos.
Never heard of the incredible string band, gonna check em out too.
Well I enjoyed this album, thanks, Thumped Album Club! First listen to the first song, when she hopped off what I thought was the rhythm, was the most worrying quirk I encountered, but that's why there's a second listen, so your ears can get the hang of it. Some of the orchestration reminded me of those '50s musicals that used to be on telly of a Sunday.
I gave this a good go the other night and have caught up on the previous posts, I think there's a pretty fair consensus around this one.
I liked the VDP orchestrations and the Harp, Piano, Strings combo is always lovely to hear; it's great to get away from standard sounds. I don't think it's an album I could love though. I don't find much in it that connects with me. I wanted to just sit back and listen and let it wash over me but I found that not much stuck with me after listening.
The lyrics are pretty dreadful; awful attempts at what UK critics tend to call "sixth form" poetry.
I listened to a few songs on their own first, then the entire record. For me it's the sound of someone trying too hard.
I don't know enough about her to know how this album is perceived in her discography; my feeling is she's still growing, trying things out, finding her way, developing her sound.
I have her current LP which I have listened to a couple of times and which didn't irk me as much as this one did.
I'm glad to have listened but I wouldn't be putting this one again.
I've only given this one spin so far but I will be returning, there's something about it that's greater than the sum of its parts.
I'm not a fan of the orchestrations overall, they get in the way more often than not. (The strongest tune is in the middle, when it's just her and her harp for the most part.) And concentrating on her voice is a mistake, as she really does sound deliberately affected despite her protestations.
But but but! It's got that indefinable factor. Maybe it's in the obvious passion that's gone into it, the feeling of 'fuck it I'm doing what I want here even if I'm not quite sure what that is'. I dig that.