Posts Tagged ‘Masseduction’

Fans of St. Vincent’s 2017 album Masseduction are about to hear its songs in a new light, starting with a stripped-down version of “Savior.” Swapping synths for piano, “Savior” now showcases Annie Clark’s vocal range while tapping into the original’s darker, more plaintive undercurrents.

The song comes as a taste of MassEducationa new version of Masseduction that pairs Clark’s resonant voice with Doveman’s Thomas Bartlett on piano. Intimate and focused, the reworked songs were performed and recorded in two days at Manhattan’s Electric Lady Studio. A handwritten letter by Clark sets the scene for this process: “Thomas and I faced each other — him, hunched over a grand piano, me, curled on a couch.”

Clark suggests that it’s the impromptu collaboration with Bartlett that lends the songs a new dimension. She describes the new record as “two dear friends playing songs together with the kind of secret understanding one can only get through endless nights in New York City.”

‘Savior’ reimagined for St. Vincent’s newest album ‘MassEducation’ coming October 12th. ‘MassEducation’ is in fact another dimension of last year’s universally acclaimed MASSEDUCTION.

MassEducation comes out Oct. 12 on Loma Vista Recordings.

Advertisements

None

Masseduction, St. Vincent’s fifth solo album, is a neck-snapping magnum opus. Though dark, it avoids the kind of overdone, maudlin doom and gloom that mopes instead of shocks; it’s the most conceptually perfect and perfectly constructed album in a whole catalog incredible albums. Every second and noise is accounted for, but it’s not so stuffy that there isn’t air to breathe. Rather, the fester of drugs, fame, loss, sex, indulgence and suicide found on Masseduction are strained through Annie Clark’s signature clever grin. While other artists attempted high-concept album roll-outs in the last year, none did so as successfully or cohesively as St.Vincent’s Masseduction — in part because her themes are vital in our current cultural conversation. For her first album in three years, Annie Clark dissects sexuality, power dynamics, and fractured identity in an industry embroiled in assault and harassment. And though she addresses the loss of control head on, she asserts her own power and control without ever presuming either can be had. Masseduction is defiance writ large by exploring reality’s smallest and most pervasive pains.

Read through the write-ups on St. Vincent’s brilliantly Kubrick-esque new record and count up how many times the male producer of this record is mentioned. It is a weird level of ignoring the endless work St. Vincent has done cultivating her sound. From her early days in Polyphonic Spree to the perfect pop of Strange Mercy to that psychotic record with David Byrne to the new album Masseduction her most succinct statement, like it or not — St. Vincent has willed her vision into life. “Los Ageless” is her best song too. Well, that’s probably “Year of the Tiger”. But “Los Ageless” is her most succinct song, it’s her most well-executed song. It soft and delicate in its delivery while still being thrifty in its layers.

“New York” may be Annie Clark’s finest ballad, and the competition for that title is stiff. Her 2014 self-titled LP alone offered two credible contenders: “Prince Johnny” and “Severed Crossed Fingers”, the latter song being that masterpiece’s crowning achievement. But in an album packed with errant pop extravaganzas, “New York” stands in stark contrast as Masseduction’s grand and naked centerpiece.

Apart from a soaring gospel chorus, what makes “New York” so remarkable is its thematic plasticity. Is Clark lamenting the end of the early-aughts NYC music scene, recently documented (to great acclaim) by Lizzy Goodman? Is she mourning the death of David Bowie? Is she addressing her breakup with Cara Delevingne? The answer is, of course, all of the above and beyond.

“New York” is a classic composite song that, in the right light, fits this or that narrative. Which is to say, it’s universal, an elegy for many occasions, a multi-faceted opus. Choose your own adventure. But it only soars so high because Clark’s shattering melody can easily bear such a heavy burden, with weightlessness and might.

Los Ageless

Image may contain: 1 person, sitting and shoes

St. Vincent   is essentially gifting her heart to the world with her intoxicating new album MASSEDUCTION, which comes out this Friday. On its third single release “Pills,” Annie Clark chants medicated verses in the tune of a whimsical jingle about drug dependency, culminating with a bluesy, decelerated outro that evokes a comedown. Clark enlisted a star-studded team to back her up on the track: Cara Delevingne and Jenny Lewis on vocals, Kamasi Washington on saxophone and beat production from Sounwave.

 

St. Vincent New York.png

New York” is a song by American musician St. Vincent. It was released on June 30th, 2017, through Loma Vista as the lead single off her fifth studio album, Masseduction. “New York” is a sombre ballad mourning the end of a relationship. Unlike her previous material, the song does not contain Clark’s “fiery guitar playing, nor the squelching industrial soundscapes of her great self-titled album from 2014. It’s just her voice, and some simple lilting piano chords—that’s about it.” The song finds Clark “singing without apparent irony about personal loss. The song could also be read as a eulogy for a certain portion of the soul of New York City itself; she sings mostly about locales in the East Village, painting them with a wild romantic streak that exists mostly in the memory of the city’s denizens.” It is far more straightforward than we’ve come to expect from Annie Clark,

American singer-songwriter St. Vincent treats the New York audience to her track fittingly titled ‘New York.’

St. Vincent was the musical guest on the Late Show With Stephen Colbert, performing two new tracks from her forthcoming album Masseduction

Annie Clark chose to sing ‘New York’ live on the show with the iconic imagery from the album’s artwork taking centre stage behind her, choosing to change the usual “motherfucker” line to “you’re the only other sucker in the city who can handle me” due to television guidelines.

Following the live TV performance, St Vincent decided to treat guests of the show to a rendition of ‘Los Ageless’ – another track from the album but the familiar PVC boots as seen in the official video reemerged for the performance.

No automatic alt text available.

In a press conference shown live on Facebook, St. Vincent announced that her latest album, Masseductionwill be released on October. 13th.  Pre-order now and download “Los Ageless” and “New York” instantly.

She also released the new single, “Los Ageless,” The song follows “New York,” which was released in June, and which just received its own video treatment.

While St. Vincent, aka Annie Clark, has previously described the record as being about heavy topics like “sex and drugs and sadness,” the lead-up to the announcement has been anything but. She’s been teasing it for days, posting short, sarcastic video clips on social media, which in a recent New Yorker profile she referred to has her new media kit.  In the clips, she mocks journalists for the cliches regularly hurled at her, like questions about performing in heels, how she’s changed since her last album or whether St. Vincent and Annie Clark are the same person. The videos were written by her friend Carrie Brownstein of Sleater-Kinney and Portlandia fame.

But there is also the question of her album cover, which reportedly features neither St. Vincent nor Annie Clark. Shot on the same set as the videos, it shows a woman bending over, donning hot pink tights and a leopard-print thong bodysuit in front of a red background. As she revealed, “This is not my ass. This is my friend Carlotta’s ass. Isn’t it a nice ass?” She’s referring to her research assistant, who is also a photographer and model. “But will people assume that it’s my ass?” she continued. “I was thinking of a photo of my face that encapsulates the entire record—but maybe that’s a bit of a fool’s errand.”

In addition, Clark sent out a message on her mailing list about Masseduction in which she likens the album release to wedding planning. “Putting out a record is like having a bridezilla-style* wedding every 2-3 years.  Lots of ‘did you get the save the date? it was an email cause, you know, the planet…’ and fussing over flower arrangements, except you’re walking down the aisle to your own music by yourself, to your ‘self,’” she wrote, before later acknowledging that the whole metaphor is “sexist af.” “Your bridesmaids and groomsmen are your label, agents, managers, day managers, personal assistants standing expectant with a mixture of stress, excitement, pride. The fans are the attendees, who will pick sides (this side prefers the old you walking down the aisle, this side is onboard for the new you waiting at the altar, there is definitely one person who will protest the marriage in a drunken, dramatic way

Annie Clark has also followed up “New York,” the controlled, composed first single, with a new track called “Los Ageless.” The title might make the song seem like a companion piece, but it’s actually a pulsing, synthetic, slightly funky piece of new wave. It sounds like nothing Clark has ever released before. Clark and Antonoff co-produced the album, recording most of it in New York’s storied Electric Lady studios. It features a ton of greats, including young jazz great Kamasi Washington on saxophone, Jenny Lewis on vocals, Kendrick Lamar collaborator Sounwave on beat production, and Thomas Bartlett, the French musician known as Doveman, on piano.

St. Vincent: Fear The Future, is a special live performance off the new album MASSEDUCTION on October 7th and presented as part of the Red Bull Music Academy Festival Los Angeles. This collaboration with Red Bull Music Academy will bring the forthcoming album as well as previous St. Vincent material to life in technicolor.

In a statement, Clark had this to say about the album:

Every record I make has an archetype. Strange Mercy was Housewives on Pills. St. Vincent was Near-Future Cult Leader. MASSEDUCTION is different, it’s pretty first person. You can’t fact-check it, but if you want to know about my life, listen to this record.