Reviewed by Audra Schroeder, Fri., April 22, 2011
The spirit of Nina Simone is alive and well on Merrill Garbus' second album. Chances are hers isn't a conscious revival, but the Oakland, Calif., multi-instrumentalist has the lioness in her soulful voice and loops it with inventive results. Whokill follows Garbus' self-recorded 2009 debut, Bird-Brains, by shifting focus to a woman's view of violence, whether mimicking the siren of "Gangsta" and/or howling, "There is a freedom in violence that I don't understand" on "Riotriot." The head-bob of "Es-so," dubby doo-wop of "Doorstep," and Afro-pop of "Bizness" demonstrate an ease with experimental instrumentation, drums, bass, sax, and ukulele skipping in tandem with her rubber-band vox. Matched with rough subject matter, this gives Whokill a sound without peer. Garbus is a "new kinda woman," declares closing track, "Killa," and it's about damn time.
Kevin Curtin, Fri., May 3, 2013
Richard Whittaker, Fri., March 22, 2013
Abby Johnston, Fri., March 15, 2013
Luke Winkie, Fri., March 15, 2013
Melanie Haupt, Fri., March 15, 2013
at Threadgill's World HQ
AIDS Candlelight Memorial Service at Republic Square Park
The Source Family at Alamo Drafthouse at the Ritz
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