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Monday 08 November 2010


Listen Up

21st May 2010

Warm your ears

Posted by: Kitten Power

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Ok fine, so at least it’s not snowing right?  Yet the leaves have well and truly fallen and it’s getting cold enough for me to dust off the duffle coat and masses of scarves.  It’s also the time of year that I am tempted to hibernate and listen exclusively to North American bands with animals in their names (see: Wolf Parade, Grizzly Bear, Band of Horses).

However after a stunning summer that I simply don’t want to end, I am fighting those winter lockdown urges and filling my speakers with beat-laden, happy tracks.  If Mother Nature won’t come to the summer party, at least my stereo will!

So here are a series of tracks that might help defrost that autumn chill - for another few weeks anyway.

M.I.A. - XXXO

‘How dare M.I.A. diss Lady Gaga then write a club banger of her own’, write shocked music bloggers across the globe.  Well I’m not going to get into a Gaga vs M.I.A. bitch fight - my loyalties do lie with the latter, but I would never dare offend Gaga’s loyal gay fanbase.  Let’s just say there’s room in the world for both - and listen to this track cause it is HOT!

Lykke Li and Kleerup - Until We Bleed

I can’t get enough of the syrupy voice of Sweden’s Lykke Li.  It’s as addictive as sugar.  She manages to take the concept of ‘love until we bleed - then fall apart in part’ and make it sound beautiful.

Robyn - Dancing On My Own

You want pop music?  Robyn is another Swedish hottie who should, as one YouTube commenter rightly points out, have taken over the world by now.  For someone who has been around for a long time, Robyn is really hitting her stride with addictive tracks like Dancing On My Own.

The Presets remix of Sarah Blasko - Hold On My Heart

Ever been with someone, where it was almost perfect, but the timing just wasn’t quite right?  Well this winter warmer from Aussie Sarah Blasko (and amped up by fellow Aussies The Presets) is for anyone out there finding they have to put a temporary hold on their heart because, well, someone has a hold on their heart.

Notorious B.I.G. vs The xx A Juicy Intro (Ha! Yes Remix)

British youngsters The xx have produced some of the hottest music of the past year.  Mix their heat-laden intro track with Biggie’s Juicy - and you have a match made in music heaven.  This will get the heads of car passengers bouncing in sync on the motorway, like we’re all back in the simpler days of ‘94.

Crystal Castles - Celestica

If the rain and the wind and the darkness all get a little too much, close your eyes and lose yourself in this track - “when it’s cold outside, hold me, don’t hold me,” I mean it’s almost winter - why should anyone have to make up their mind?!  This is a return to Crystal Castles at their ethereal best. Long may that continue.

→ No CommentsTags: General · Music

15th April 2010

Has the Rugby World Cup gone gay?

Posted by: Kitten Power

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On the back of the news Team New Zealand has got Camper I now read that Auckland authorities are looking at pitching a giant tent at Queens Wharf for the Rugby World Cup.

Pitching a giant tent.  At Queens Wharf.

Camp.

I can’t help but wonder if the Rugby World Cup has gone just a little gay.  It makes sense. Why not target that pink-rugby-loving-dollar with a giant erection on the waterfront? Just think of the marketing possibilities: “Come out to New Zealand and come inside Queens. We’ve raised our poles just for you.”

The council could pitch a row of tiny pink tents to direct the dropkicks in the Barmy Army from Queens Wharf to Ponsonby.  Promoters could replace that awful Feelers cover being used in the promotional ads with Right Queer Right Now, performed by a K’ Rd drag queen impersonating Lady Gaga.  And I’m sure there are plenty of men throughout heartland New Zealand who would make kind homestay offers to the French and Italian players.

But let’s do the maths here.  Despite the constant groping, scrummaging, tackling and ass patting, as far as I know there is one openly gay player and one openly gay referee in international rugby.

Yet things may have changed without me noticing.  According to the loud angry guy sitting behind me at the Blues game last weekend, the referee there was also a ‘fucking faggot’, the guy who dropped the ball a few times was a ‘fucking homo’ and guy in the crowd who told him to shut up was a ‘fucking gay c#&$.

So are the Rugby World Cup organisers, aware of this apparent sudden sprouting of gayness in the rugby world, finally going to be a little inclusive with their marketing?

There are plenty of rugby pin-up boys for those who like their men waxed, a little pretty and clad in tiny shorts.  And with a burly prop named Woodcock and a hairy seal-shooting hooker named Hore, the bear market is also covered.

When I ran the idea past a gay friend he replied “if a ball was meant to be carried it would have a handle, like a handbag.”  Hmm.  Maybe it’s not such a good idea after all.

→ No CommentsTags: General

15th February 2010

This One Goes Out To All The Romantics

Posted by: Kitten Power

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The term heartbreak doesn’t come near it.  It doesn’t come anywhere close describing that precise moment when she grabs your heart by throat and hurls it down the stairs.  That instant when you watch it shatter and scatter into a million different pieces.

It’s the “I love you baby but I need to be by myself”, the “I just don’t want a relationship”, or the “I met someone else”.

A number of months ago I broke up with my first love.  The girl of my dreams.  The one who swooped perfectly into my life just months after I came out, the one I built a life and plans for the future with.

Then suddenly she didn’t want to be with me anymore.  As much as she loved me.  It just wasn’t working.  And we both knew that.  She needed to be free, I wanted more than she could give anymore - and I just had to let her go.

As much as they rip you apart and make you doubt everything you believe in, difficult break-ups do yield some good things.  You get streams of amazing friends who come over with three bottles of wine, two open ears and one huge box of tissues.  You get to rejoin the world of dating and playing and all those nerve-wracking first moments with a girl, that send you in a wave of trembles.  You get to feel incredibly free, to do whatever you like, with nobody to ultimately answer to.

It takes time, but you get beyond waking up and reaching across the bed to find nobody there.  Beyond falling apart every time a bill arrives in both your names.  Beyond dying inside when you see a girl couple madly in love holding hands and sauntering down the street.  You toughen up, you steel your jaw and you start living again.

Of course it’s not a romance novel and it’s not easy.  I freely admit I have been sinking rather than swimming in the relationship stakes, with a series of mini-failures, where I have ended up stung all over again - simply for falling too easily when it wasn’t really right, by being too busy looking for something to match that person you wanted to spend the rest of your life with.

But I have only been out for about four years.  My lesbian heart’s still pretty much an emo kid.  It’s still learning.

I’ve learned I’m not cut out for this seemingly in-vogue lesbian ‘fuckbuddy’ or ‘friends with benefits’ thing.  It can be fun for a while, but in the end I want the whole mad-passionate-oh-my-god-I’ll-die-if-I-don’t-get-to-see-you- tonight-and-tomorrow-outrageous-ridiculous-I’m-in-love-with-every-piece-of-you thing.

I’m a cliché romantic when it comes to women.  I wear my heart on my sleeve.  It may make me an easy target, but it’s a risk I’m willing to take.  Cause I’m pretty sure one day the next love of my life is going to walk right smack bang into it.

And it might be amazing and perfect for a month, a year, a lifetime.  In the end you just have to pick yourself up and start all over again.

It all comes down to what a wise friend told me many months ago: “your heart doesn’t ACTUALLY break, it just feels like it”.

And thank god your heart keeps on beating.  No matter how much each pounding, pulverising second of it hurts.  As long as it’s still beating.

(For anyone with a broken heart - go buy yourself a copy of Noah and The Whale’s beautiful break-up concept album The First Days of Spring, buy a bottle of wine, chill and mope a little.  I swear you’ll feel better by the end of it!)

→ 9 CommentsTags: General

2nd February 2010

The xx - drug free ecstasy

Posted by: Kitten Power

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The xx were one of my favourite musical discoveries of last year.  Their performance at Auckland’s inaugural Laneway Festival only cemented them as a band I will incessantly adore.

You see this was going to be a Laneway Festival review, which it still will be to some extent … but really … it’s chiefly about why I think that if you haven’t heard The xx yet, or have only heard their brilliant cover of Florence and The Machine’s version of You’ve Got The Love or their cover of Womack & Womack’s Teardrops, you should really go ahead and treat yourself to their entire record.

There is one thing you should know right off about this young band from southwest London … they make sexy music.  Incredibly sexy music.  Their album, xx, is the kinda music you wanna light some candles and open a bottle of wine to and enjoy with that man or lady in your life (I’m telling you, I’ve done it and it worked out quite nicely!).

Originally a four piece, The xx are now a threesome - led by the gorgeous boy-girl vocals of Romy Madley-Croft and Oliver Sim.

It’s hard to categorise their sound beyond the word “sexy”.  It’s rock - but rock that’s dripping with sweaty R&B bass and drumlines, weeping post-punk guitars and spine-tingling vocals.  It’s drug-free ecstasy.

One of my favourite tracks is the intimate Basic Space … with lyrics like: “I think I’m losing where you end and I begin”.

Seeing The xx play live was one of those seminal concert experiences you can lose yourself in and never want to end.  But, as they were playing at a festival their slot was of course all too short.  Come back and play again!!!

Luckily for me there were plenty of aural treats on offer at the Laneway Festival - an event which first began in Melbourne and has crossed the ditch for the first time this year and made its Kiwi home right smack in the middle of Britomart.  Unlike the Big Day Out there were only a few thousand tickets put up for sale, which made the two stages easily accessible and allowed short-ass me to actually see the bands who played.

It was incredibly exciting to see legendary post-punk band Echo & The Bunnymen. Hearing The Killing Moon, Lips Like Sugar and The Cutter live was an amazing experience for a kid who was born when they were in their heyday.  It was a good show - although they didn’t really pull out the stops.  I mean the show was basically stand and deliver material.  Yet it was still special for a me, a girl with a pure post-punk heart, to see them live.

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There was a plethora of great Kiwi talent - including two of my favourites The Naked and Famous and Cut Off Your Hands.  I also enjoyed the chance to briefly check out the legend Daniel Johnston.  Aussies Dirty 3 gave a raucous show, led by Warren Ellis … seen here in his element:

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All in all, The xx made my day.  Laneway Festival was a success … the only common gripes from the punters were that there was not enough food and drink on offer - lining up for half an hour for a beer or a burger is not ideal when there is so much incredible music to take in.  However the organisers seem well aware of this and it appears to be council restrictions that made it so.

I’ll be back again next year - In the meantime, I’ll turn up The xx, light some candles, crack open a bottle of Merlot and … yeah … maybe invite someone over … 8)

→ 4 CommentsTags: General · Music

5th November 2009

Who Are These Haters?

Posted by: Kitten Power

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I was living in a bubble.  A big gay happy bubble.

It was like a lesbian fantasy land.  Each morning I stepped out of my apartment, put on my headphones, skipped past the God Loves Gays message some wit wrote into the concrete on my corner.  I sauntered merrily up to K Rd, picked up a coffee from any number of gay-filled cafes, said ‘heeeeyyyyy’ to the trans-ladies lounging on benches and saluted the Naval and Family’s rainbow flag fluttering gaily in the breeze.

At work I giggled and gossiped with my many gay and fag hag colleagues, bravely and tirelessly fought the odd homophobic comment that popped into general workplace conversation, sighed at the news some poor gay had been the victim of a hate crime many worlds away from my own.  I thought about doing something about it, then I forgot and got back to work, gossiping, giggling.

After work I drank my scotch and dry surrounded by witty metro people from every shade of the big old gay rainbow, hit on cute girls and wallowed gloriously in thoughts of just how fun it was to be a lesbian in the big gay city, how much I loved my friends, how much I adored my wonderful homo world.

La la la la la, it was happy sweet little lesbian life.

Then a few weeks ago. Bam. The bubble burst. 

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I woke up to a text message from my best friend which read “In Palmerston North Hospital.  Covered in blood after being gay bashed.”

I’m 26. It’s 2009.  This kind of thing just does not happen in my happy gay world.

In my world, he and his boyfriend would never be set upon by ape-like numbskulls as they left a bar, after farewelling a friend who died far too young.  They would never have the shit beaten out of them and end up battered, broken and bruised as punishment for that oh-so-horrific crime of being a gay couple walking down a street in middle New Zealand.

In this sweet little world of mine, the kindest, funniest, gentlest, most loveable boy in the world, well, nobody would ever want to hurt him.

There are many things I could say about Palmerston North.  There are many things I have said about Palmerston North.  I may have threatened to storm down there in a fit of dyke rage and burn it to the ground.  But this is not about Palmerston North, that was simply where it happened.  This is about one simple question:

Who are these haters?

Because now, weeks later, my boy is still struggling.  He has a head injury which could have a terrible impact on his much-loved career, where his ability to think on his feet is crucial.  He has not been able to work since.  He is still getting brain scans and is facing lengthy rehabilitation.

I’ve struggled to write this blog purely because I don’t know how to explain exactly how outraged and upset I am.  How much it hurts to see my best friend, my heart, my brother in gay arms, reduced to a lost, broken shell.

 I mean, come on, who are these haters?

As a young straight woman said to me last night “gay bashed?  Like, an ACTUAL gay bashing?  I didn’t think that happened anymore.”  It’s been a common response.

I know to older readers out there who fought through the years of socially acceptable hate, it may seem like nothing new - nothing you and your friends were not subjected to week in, week out.  But I am one of the lucky ones who gets to benefit from your fight.  I get to live in a world where gay bashings on New Zealand streets are not the norm.  And why shouldn’t I?

All I can say and say again and again and again is: who are these haters?

Who are these ignorant slugs who think it’s ok to attack someone purely because they are gay?  Who are their parents who allowed them to grow up thinking this way?  Who is their community that isn’t holding them to account?

I can rage, I can cry, I can vow to burn Palmerston North to the ground, wiping out every Neanderthal homophobic piece of slime along the way.  But really, all I am left with is the same frustrating question: 

WHO THE FUCK ARE THESE HATERS?

→ 13 CommentsTags: General

14th October 2009

Thou Shalt Be My Lesbian Daughter

Posted by: Kitten Power

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I feared coming out to my dad for years.  I decided he would hate me, cast me out, damn me to hell if I ever told him who I really was.

Let me put into context here.  My father is a heavily religious man, a church leader, the kind of guy who says seven prayers and recites seventeen scriptures before he even leaves the house in the morning.  A man whose off-key pitch was always the most fervent, drowning out the congregation during church hymns … the man who, for my entire childhood, ensured I was decked out in a modest dress and sitting in a pew every Sunday morning.

He brought me up to be a good God-fearing daughter … but I turned out to be, what I considered, more of a bad dad-fearing daughter.

In my early adulthood, when I really, truly admitted to myself I was a lesbian, a “sinner”, a “freak” a “pervert” (all those awful untrue things many of us tell ourselves when we just realise who we are) I feared I would be cast out from my family.  I decided I would be the black sheep, the gay orphan, the empty chair at Christmas-time.

So I came out only to those I knew would accept me.  I lived a half-life, hiding girlfriends, letting my family think my my best gay boy friends were my boyfriends - cause it was only going to hurt them to know right?

Then over two days it all came crashing down.  My dad’s mother died.  He was a mess.  After burying his wife, my mother, losing his own mother broke his heart.  He was a different man.  He was no longer the tough religious conqueror he had always been.  I called him one day to see how he was coping and we had the first straight up conversation of our entire lives.  I told him I missed having a dad, that I had been hiding out from him, that I wanted to be his friend.

He came over the next day and we talked.  He was telling me stories about my mother and how much he loved her, as I made him a sandwich.  Something in me just gave way as I thought about my girlfriend and how much I loved her, in just the same way as he loved my mother.

My voice tripped and stumbled as I said “ah dad, there’s ah … something I really want to tell you … I have been in a relationship with a woman for a year and a half and I’m in love with her”.

My heart jumped a quarter of a beat as he tipped his balding head and raised an eyebrow at me, then replied “ok love … hmm … well … that’s becoming a bit more common nowadays isn’t it?”

I dropped a bottle of relish.  Right there on the kitchen floor.  It smashed red and raw across the tiles.  I don’t who was more shocked, the bottle or me.

I vaguely remember dropping paper towels as I cleaned the floor and shrugged and choked that, “well people are probably just freer to be open about it and live their lives now”.  I finished whatever sandwich I had whipped up, which was delivered minus the relish - then plonked it in front of him.

“Do you think you’re one of those people that like both?” he questioned, completely straight-faced.

I didn’t think my father knew what a lesbian was, never mind a bisexual.

“Ah, no I don’t think so.  I’m pretty sure I just like girls,” I replied.

In the end, coming out to my father was one of the hardest, and easiest things I have ever done.  I know that’s a complete oxymoron.  But it’s true.  As soon as I said it I realised it wasn’t the horrible, criminal lifestyle I’d decided he’d think it was.  I felt free …

… we talked, I told him all about my amazing girlfriend - he thanked me for being honest with him and we parted, as friends, for the first time.

The man I had considered to be a religious freak was actually wise, sweet and most of all - he loved me and just wanted me to be happy.

I was the judgemental one, not him.

Now, my dad may get a little nervous when I bring girls over, he may refer to the woman I’m seeing as “your mate” … but for him, that’s acceptance - and it means the world to me.

He isn’t far away from 60.  I have no idea how long he has left in this world, so I’m eternally grateful I took the plunge and grasped my relationship with him.

I have friends who have not spoken to their parents in years, because as soon as they came out they were cast out.  I have other friends whose parents still don’t know.  I even have a young friend whose parents split her and the teenage love of her life up through psychological torture. I feel like I’m one of the lucky ones.

If you’re considering whether to come out to your parents, pick the right moment, make sure you have the support you need - and go for it.  You might be surprised, you might be heartbroken - but there is nothing more powerful than biting the bullet and being true to yourself.

You will always have your gay family, who will love and accept you.  My gay family are still the people who I run to first when I have a break-up, a breakdown or a breakthrough.

They love me for who I am, rather than in spite of it.

→ 10 CommentsTags: General

10th July 2009

Gossip - Music For Men

Posted by: Kitten Power

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On the first listen I liked the new Gossip album Music For Men. On the second, I really liked it. By about the third or fourth, I was hooked and delirious. Even when I’m not listening, Beth Ditto and her Stevie Nicks-esque yowls are playing on repeat through my head.

Let’s get something out of the way, as many in the media seem so obsessed by the fact singer Beth Ditto is a plus-sized lesbian they seem to have forgotten to listen to the music when reviewing the album . . . ok so yes, she’s a big woman, but she has an even bigger heart.  Ditto is an icon for any woman who has ever stood up and said ‘who the hell wants to look like Britney Spears anyway?’

So to what really matters, the music . . . Music For Men bangs open with Dimestore Diamond, then the camp, catchy single Heavy Cross which exemplifies the dance vibe, that is a progression from the stripped-down punk rock and roll of Gossip’s early days.

Yet Music For Men is still very rock and roll - Brace Paine’s guitar is still gleefully unleashed and Hannah Blilie pounds the drums like a demon . . . but there is also 80s-synth, pianos and enough “oohs and ahhs” to make The Supremes proud. 

This album does come with a sense of deja vu, with pop references jumping out all over the place. Such as in Love Long Distance where Ditto croons “I heard through the bassline, not much longer would you be my baby”.  But just as a song sounds familiar - it takes a leap in a completely different direction.

The track which has been the most compulsively in my head since I heard the album could also be the new Gossip gay anthem - Men In Love.  It urges gay men to “dance like there’s nobody looking . . . go out all night and sleep all day”. The “nah, nah, nahs” and shame, shame, shames” in this track are addictive.

But I mean - how many songs are there in this world which proudly state “Men in love - with each other?”  It’s just another reason to treasure Gossip.

Beth Ditto once said one of the reasons Gossip started was to make people dance - and I defy anyone to keep still while listening to Music For Men.

This album will get you through any winter blues . . . whether you just had an awful break-up, or are simply sick of being cold, Beth, Brace and Hannah will warm you up.

→ No CommentsTags: Music

20th March 2009

Food for Thought

Posted by: Kitten Power

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If I do say so myself, I am becoming a rather accomplished vegetarian cook.  You see, while I enjoy slicing into a pink-hearted steak, my girlfriend is a vegetarian.  The kind that only eats fish.I first discovered this when we were in bed one afternoon (it was in those early days, when you stay in bed most of the day) and we decided to order a pizza to stave off starvation.  “Well what do you want, a barbecue chicken or a meatlovers”, I asked, perusing the menu.  “Um, I don’t eat meat” was the reply. 

Now I was relatively new to this lesbian game and while I’d heard rumours a blight of non-meat-eating was common among women who love women, I was a little taken aback.  You see I grew up in a meat and three veg household - sometimes it was even a two meat and one veg household.  So I instantly decided the relationship was doomed.  Until, thankfully, we figured we could get a half and half pizza . . . which arrived with some kind of bean gunk on her slices. 

What is it about lesbians and being picky with food?  I have about 59 vegan friends, 101 vegetarian mates and another who, most shockingly of all, doesn’t eat onions.  No meat I can handle - but no onions?!

It’s kind of funny to think back now on how terrified I was about the prospect of my girlfriend foregoing meat now, as I type between hunting down vegetarian recipes that I think may thrill the pants off my woman.  I’m a lover of lentils, a cous cous connoisseur, a terror with tofu.

My piece de resistance is a pumpkin and spinach lasagne, which is getting me a reputation as a kitchen whiz from Silverdale to Panmure.  My spicy chickpea curry is rating a close second.

But honestly, what’s the real secret?  Why do I spend so much time crafting such delicacies?  

It’s because she, my darling vegetarian girlfriend, cooks a mean steak.

Anyway, this weekend my girlfriend and I head off to the home of strange food, the USA, for a WHOLE MONTH.

I’ll aim to blog about my experiences along the way.  I will chiefly be in New England - where I will be sure to have a good taste of the food and a good look at the gay scene.

See ya!

→ 8 CommentsTags: General

11th March 2009

Amanda Palmer brings a killer show

Posted by: Kitten Power

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So who killed Amanda Palmer?  Well I don’t know.  But she sure slayed me last night.

Palmer strode onto the stage at Auckland’s The Studio clad in never-ending leather boots, a short skirt and a beat up t-shirt, clutching a handful of flowers.  The audience cheered and heckled, but was quickly lulled into silence as she stood waiting.  The she burst into a powerful rendition of The Wind That Shakes The Barley, with no backing, letting her voice do it all.

two.jpgShe then took a seat at her piano and burst into Astronaut, then Ampersand, both from her solo album Who Killed Amanda Palmer?

Palmer brought a stripped down show to Auckland after parting ways with performance troupe The Danger Ensemble in Australia - and it wasn’t long before she was stripping herself down, whipping off her shirt to reveal an incredibly sexy bodice.

There was a sense of loneliness around Palmer, she admitted herself “I’m not used playing alone, so I’m just going to sit here and play songs that occur to me.”

The intimacy of her loneliness made her performance even more honest, more real, more hilarious, more poignant and even more rollicking.

Palmer’s music choices ranged from a heartbreaking song written in response to the Columbine shootings, to the “controversial” single about teenage mindsets Oasis.  From ditties about lovers googling each other, to a cover of My Favourite Things from The Sound of Music. 

She also treated the crowd with a few Dresden Dolls tracks; Coin Operated Boy, Mrs O, finishing the show with a crowd-favourite Girl Anachronism.

Palmer’s easy connection with her audience is incredible.  Most touring artists struggle through a few mumbled attempts at “Hello Auckland”, but when Palmer chats between songs it almost feels like you’re hanging out in your lounge with a friend who is jamming a few tunes.  She weaves stories, she jokes, she dips into quiet sincerity - and she listens to what people shout out.

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There was also a segment called “Ask Amanda Anything” where pre-gathered audience questions were read out.  Palmer was asked questions like what her favourite Neil Gaiman book and David Bowie record were, whether she was too classy for cask wine (the answer - no, she’s definitely not) and why she was so sexy - which she decided was a rhetorical question.

Although she may be feeling a little lonely, Palmer doesn’t need to worry about the solo-power she wields over her audience.  She’s a one-woman danger ensemble.

Amanda Palmer plays Bar Bodega in Wellington on Thursday March 12.

→ No CommentsTags: General · Music

4th March 2009

Album review: Who Killed Amanda Palmer?

Posted by: Kitten Power

Bisexual musician Amanda Palmer (of the The Dresden Dolls) plays in at The Studio in Auckland on Tuesday March 10, then Bar Bodega in Wellington on Thursday March 12.

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The solo-debut from Amanda Palmer opens with an explosion of shouts and banging piano in Astronaut: A Short History of Nearly Nothing.  The piano lulls fleetingly for the entry of her deep, dark voice, before both she and the piano rollick together with pounding drums, then mellow out once again, in a Pixies-esque cabaret kind of way.

I’m in complete, head over heels, ridiculous, teenager-like love with Amanda Palmer’s voice.  Her Boston accent is musical in itself, but her voice has an addictive toffee-richness.

The solo effort Who Killed Amanda Palmer? knocks the socks off.  It is both rollicking and gentle. Astronaut could wake up your neighbourhood; Leeds United is stuck-in-your-head-all-day catchy, while the ballad Ampersand is simply beautiful.  Palmer doesn’t just sing.  She weaves raucous stories.

Some of those stories have courted some controversy.

Now, the video for upbeat track Oasis has been banned in the UK, apparently for “making fun of rape and abortion”.  The song is about a teenager who is fed alcohol, gets raped and has an abortion, but finds it’s all ok really because she sent a letter to Oasis and they sent her an autographed picture back.

It seems in this case the Brits don’t understand the power of irony in expressing a message. Palmer, herself a rape victim, blogged: “if you cannot sense the irony in this song, you’re about two intelligence points above a kumquat.”

That isn’t the only uproar - a fan “reBELLYon” was sparked when her label demanded she remove “uncommercially fat” shots of her stomach from the video for Leeds United . . . fans responded by sending pictures of their own stomachs to the record company. 

All controversy aside, Who Killed Amanda Palmer is a quickly addictive solo debut which fans of The Dresden Dolls will lap up.  I only wish it included her cover of Radiohead’s Creep, which she plays with a ukulele.  Have a listen here.

Fingers crossed she plays it at her Auckland show, where I’ll be front and centre.  The word is the openly bisexual musician likes femme girls . . . guess I’ll be dusting off the heels then.  Heh.

→ 2 CommentsTags: General · Music