Blackberry Belle

Blackberry Belle

4.6 3
by The Twilight Singers
     
 

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Greg Dulli returns to his Twilight Singers project with the atmospheric Blackberry Belle. This time around, the dirtily soulful self-hater/lover is joined at one point or another by multi-instrumentalist Mathias Schneeberger, guitarist Alvin Youngblood Hart, Galactic drummer Stanton Moore, theSee more details below

Overview

Greg Dulli returns to his Twilight Singers project with the atmospheric Blackberry Belle. This time around, the dirtily soulful self-hater/lover is joined at one point or another by multi-instrumentalist Mathias Schneeberger, guitarist Alvin Youngblood Hart, Galactic drummer Stanton Moore, the incomparable Petra Haden, and Mark Lanegan, who takes main vocal duties for the shadowy devil of closer "Number Nine." Apollonia even makes an appearance as a backing vocalist for a few tracks. Somehow, even with its grainy appropriations of trip-hop (especially "Teenage Wristband," which sounds like a holdover from the first half of the Singers' 2000 debut), everything on Blackberry Belle begins to eventually sound like Leonard Cohen. The moody black-and-white palm tree cover art is no joke -- this is an album that views sunlight through the cracked blinds of a claustrophobic hotel lounge. "There's a riot goin' on/Inside of me/Won't you come inside/See what I see?," "I think we're lost, don't worry/I've been here before," "If you're in trouble then I'll follow" -- it's melancholy and death wishes in the first person here, and love only exists as a means to a bitter end. These are themes that Dulli has made a habit of discussing; nevertheless, they're made newly potent over Blackberry's dusky, shifting rhythms. Things are too scary to be danceable, although the album definitely has a groove. "Decatur St." mixes Massive Attack with Afghan Whigs, while "Follow You Down" is shimmering and stripped-down, with only frail guitar and piano to guide its death wish lyrics. Drummer Moore injects some funk into "Feathers," and "Esta Noche" finds the inherent beat in a European dial tone. Quietly building opener "Martin Eden" might make the defining statement of the record with its initial lines: "Black out the windows/It's party time." Cohen's melancholy is coursing through Dulli's tortured veins; it's good to see that he's still getting top-notch talent to aid in the nightly bloodletting.

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Editorial Reviews

Rolling Stone - Matt Diehl
1/2 This is old-school album rock, each fragment linking to tell a story, every nuance begging to be savored.

Product Details

Release Date:
10/14/2003
Label:
One Little Indian Us
UPC:
0827954040124
catalogNumber:
401
Rank:
388606

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Twilight Singers   Primary Artist
Mark Lanegan   Vocals,Group Member
Greg Dulli   Guitar,Piano,Drums,Keyboards,Vocals,Mellotron,fender rhodes,Group Member
Richard Ford   Pedal Steel Guitar,Group Member
Brian Young   Drums,Group Member
Petra Haden   Trumpet,Violin,Vocals,Group Member
Steve Myers   Vocals,Group Member
Michael Sullivan   Bass,Group Member
Mike Napolitano   Bass,Guitar,Group Member
Rick Steff   Organ,Clavinet,Group Member
John Lampkin   Trombone,Group Member
Stanton Moore   Drums,Group Member
Jesse Tobias   E-bow,Group Member
Chris Phillips   Drums,Synthesizer Loop,Group Member
Mathias Scheeberger   Guitar,Piano,Clavinet,Mellotron,fender rhodes,Group Member
Greg Wieczorek   Percussion,Drums,Vocals,Group Member
Jon Skibic   Banjo,Guitar,Vocals,Group Member
Chris Gray   Trumpet,Group Member
Nikki Crawford   Vocals,Group Member
Kamasi Washington   Saxophone,Group Member
Scott Ford   Bass,Group Member
Matt Hergert   Drums,Group Member
Apollonia Kotero   Vocals,Group Member
Ashlie Philastre   Hand Clapping,Group Member
Susan Phillips   Hand Clapping,Group Member

Technical Credits

Kerry Brown   Engineer
Greg Dulli   Composer,Producer
Jeff Powell   Engineer
Mike Napolitano   Producer,Engineer
David Katznelson   Executive Producer
Jimmy Sloan   Engineer
Mathias Scheeberger   Producer,Engineer

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