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Wire Waltz
     

Wire Waltz

by The Last Town Chorus
 
On her second album as the Last Town Chorus, Megan Hickey continues to explore the sound of the lap steel guitar, moving it into unfamiliar, spooky terrain creating gloomy, atmospheric vignettes long on mood and existential angst. The feeling is almost ambient, dirge-like tunes that combine folk's bleak emotional realism, alt-rock's artistic approach, and a moaning,

Overview

On her second album as the Last Town Chorus, Megan Hickey continues to explore the sound of the lap steel guitar, moving it into unfamiliar, spooky terrain creating gloomy, atmospheric vignettes long on mood and existential angst. The feeling is almost ambient, dirge-like tunes that combine folk's bleak emotional realism, alt-rock's artistic approach, and a moaning, lonesome ambience that's all her own. Her vocals have that broken little girl quality that many female folksingers have, but Hickey doesn't use it as a coy come-on. She really does sound broken, or at least about to break down and cry. She draws out her words and slurs syllables, just as she draws out extended, forlorn notes from her 1940s vintage lap steel guitar. The songs often flow together, making the album sound like an achingly sad suite of songs moving slowly to some unknown but probably dark conclusion. The album's stark production (Hickey produced and engineered the album herself) contributes to the record's overall mute, desolate feel. "Wintering in Brooklyn" is the closest Hickey comes to an actual country song, but it's as much rock as country, with a steel solo that ratchets up the emotional ante to an unbearable intensity. The song takes an arch look at the rich folk who fly south and west when the weather changes. "It's Not Over" has our heroine following her lost lover and new girlfriend, repeating the tag line -- "It's not over till I say it's over" -- but the impression is more of a masochist than a stalker. The album's hit is Hickey's reinvention of Bowie's "Modern Love," a track that was used in a 2006 episode of ABC's Grey's Anatomy. It's taken at the same funereal pace as the rest of the album, and her defeated phrasing makes it sound even more cynical and hopeless than the original. The despondent character of this album isn't for everyone, but those who like to wallow in gloom and depression will find Hickey a kindred soul.

Product Details

Release Date:
03/06/2007
Label:
HACKTONE RECORDS
UPC:
0081227999971
catalogNumber:
100306

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