Cate Le Bon

CYRK

The Control Group

Jan 18, 2012 Issue #39 - Best of 2011 Bookmark and Share


Welsh singer/songwriter Cate Le Bon opens her latest album CYRK with the jangling, infectious "Falcon Eyed," a carousing rocker that sounds like Nico if she had stuck around with The Velvet Underground long enough to be a part of Loaded. It's a bold, promising opener of a song. And although little of what follows in the album approaches that song's instant accessibility, the subsequent numbers unfold in a subtler, more impressionable way that showcases just how poignant and powerful Le Bon can be in her songwriting. Quieter numbers such as "Greta" work almost as lullabies that soothingly permeate the listener's brain, until you realize that the lyrics are anything but comforting.

Le Bon often works with a nursery-rhyme melodic scheme, recalling such past masters of the technique as Syd Barrett and Donovan. She can be gentle and lilting one moment, then burst with rocking riffs in the next. But regardless of the tempo, Le Bon's signature lies in her lyrics, which usually reflect an introspective melancholia that's all her own. (www.catelebon.co.uk)

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