Dirty Little Secret

( 2 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Hal Horowitz
There was a seven year gap between Dirty Little Secret, Katharine Whalen's sophomore release, and her debut. Perhaps not surprisingly then, the two albums are worlds apart stylistically with the only constant being the singer's retro vocals. She has abandoned the smoky, Billie Holiday style that was a logical extension of her work with the Squirrel Nut Zippers, for a lounge/spy music/'60s avant-pop that suits her just as well and arguably better. Although she gets top billing on the front cover, the success of the album should go equally to David Sale ex-Camus. He writes or co-writes the songs, plays every instrument, engineered all but two tracks, and is clearly the ...
See more details below
CD
$15.64
BN.com price
(Save 7%)$16.99 List Price
Other sellers (CD)
  • All (6) from $1.99   
  • New (5) from $5.00   
  • Used (1) from $1.99   

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Hal Horowitz
There was a seven year gap between Dirty Little Secret, Katharine Whalen's sophomore release, and her debut. Perhaps not surprisingly then, the two albums are worlds apart stylistically with the only constant being the singer's retro vocals. She has abandoned the smoky, Billie Holiday style that was a logical extension of her work with the Squirrel Nut Zippers, for a lounge/spy music/'60s avant-pop that suits her just as well and arguably better. Although she gets top billing on the front cover, the success of the album should go equally to David Sale ex-Camus. He writes or co-writes the songs, plays every instrument, engineered all but two tracks, and is clearly the driving force behind the project. Whalen is in fine voice, but it's the production that shares and often dominates the spotlight. These heavily overdubbed songs exude a chilly, frisky, occasionally dreamy go-go quality, somewhere between trip-hop, Vegas jazz, and Austin Powers. The brassy bongo-driven attack of the opening, "The Funnest Game," makes it sound like it came off the soundtrack of a Sean Connery era James Bond flick. Instruments fade in and out during tunes and the programmed drums bring a contemporary feel, even as a song such as "Meet Me by the Fire" recalls girl group aesthetics. Just when you think you've got the album figured out, it shifts direction, eluding your grasp but beckoning you back for another spin. "The Garden" is built on tropical percussion, wandering trumpet, and staccato keyboards as Whalen double-tracks vocals in a bizarre but sexy moan. "Want You Back" imagines a Peggy Lee, Herb Alpert, and John Barry mash-up and the techno beat, mariachi trumpets, and '60s drama of "In the Night" is both winsome and vivid. Dirty Little Secret often seems like the soundtrack to some imaginary '60s B-movie, a bit schlocky and loungy but ultimately cool. It doesn't all work because sometimes these songs take a few too many detours, but it sounds like little else and scores on originality even when Whalen and Sale juggle a few too many creative balls.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/6/2006
  • Label: M.c. Records
  • UPC: 607735005623
  • Catalog Number: 56
  • Sales rank: 364,478

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 The Funnest Game (3:54)
  2. 2 Dirty Little Secret (3:48)
  3. 3 You-Who (3:01)
  4. 4 Follow (3:42)
  5. 5 Meet Me by the Fire (4:58)
  6. 6 The Garden (1:35)
  7. 7 Angel (3:56)
  8. 8 Want You Back (4:04)
  9. 9 Long (2:55)
  10. 10 In the Night (3:46)
  11. 11 Three Blind Mice (3:05)
  12. 12 Blur (2:56)
Read More Show Less

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Katharine Whalen Primary Artist, Vocals
David Sale Multi Instruments
Technical Credits
John Plymale Engineer
Brent Lambert Mastering
Joe Tullos Composer
Lane Wurster Art Direction
Katharine Whalen Composer
Fred Guarino Mastering
Catherine Carpentieri Executive Producer
Mark Carpentieri Executive Producer
Phillip Dwyer Graphic Design
David Sale Composer, Producer, Engineer
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 2 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(1)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Love it!

    Unlike so many records these days that just drone on endlessly after the one or two hits, "Dirty little secrets" moves through many styles effortlessly. There are so many interesting musical parts that it really takes many listens to get them all. My favorite song is the last one! Blur. Now how many records can you say that about, except the Beatles of course. Jazz purists might sulk though. I would warn them off. But especially if you come to this without any preconceived notions, this is a fantastic music ride.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Trip-hopping Squirrel Nut Zipper

    Eschewing the hot-jazz of her former combo, Squirrel Nut Zippers, vocalist Katharine Whalen brings her quirky singing style to an equally quirky modern context. Unlike her 1999 Jazz Squad outing, Whalen's hooked up with writer and multi-instrumentalist David Sale for a funky, trip-hop excursion into sounds that bounce like an amped-up version of Portishead's "Dummy." The production compellingly syncopates instrumental lines, multilayered background vocals and danceable tempos beneath Whalen's vocals. There's an undercurrent of exotica, occasionally rises to the fore such for the percussive "The Garden" and brass-lined "Want You Back." Whalen's voice still has the Billie Holiday edge of her SQN releases, but the impact is completely different in this most surprising and inventive context. 3-1/2 stars, if allowed fractional ratings. [©2006 redtunictroll at hotmail dot com]

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews