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Bat For Lashes - Fur And Gold

2007-08-17 11:55
Okay so Bat vocalist Natasha Khan’s tri-polar syllabic flow on these Grimm-etched fables of ponies, woods, wizards and broken hearts suggest she’s obviously in awe of the above-mentioned experimental pop divas. Just as well then, that the Pakistani-born British siren shows she’s more than savvy enough to avoid caricaturing her heroes.

For starters, Fur And Gold is soundtracked to an enchanting canvas of electro-acoustic instruments including haunting minor key piano and harpsichord textures, marching drum percussion and eerie handclaps. Wait up, handclaps? Chill. This isn’t the bohemian-hippie cinema of free-jammers such as Sunburned Hand of the Man or the fairytale folk whimsy of chamber pop pin-ups like Joanna Newsom. Bat For Lashes may be obsessive compulsively in search of experimental escapism, but there are more than enough hum-along choruses and captivating hooks here to actually dance to.

Most bewitching of all are Khan’s lyrics which segue from Gothic black lodge ballads about riding a pony (“Horse and I”) and a breathless laptop folk tale of too many pity shags (“Trophy”) to a surreal parable about vampirism (“Bat's Mouth”). Add a beautifully brittle break-up ballad hangover (“Sad Eyes”) and a trip-hopped pop daydream (“The Wizard”) to a non-stop erotic electro-clash cabaret about having an existential crisis (“What’s A Girl To Do?”) and an unplugged allegory of eco-suicide (“Seal Jubilee”) and you start to realize just how sexy, sinister and yes, spiritually strange and wonderful Fur And Gold is.

- Miles Keylock

Imagine Kate Bush inviting Bjork, Siouxsie Sioux and Sinead O' Connor round for an alt. pop séance and you’ve got some idea of where Bat For Lashes is on the weirdo-warbler map.

What to read next: Kalahari

Bibi 2007-08-17 02:32 PM
Bat away The influences Mr Keylock mentions are definitely present, but they are just that, influences. I really enjoyed this fresh new sound and I'm running out to buy this cd. Right now.

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