Tune-Yards

Whokill (4AD)

Phases & Stages

Tune-Yards

Whokill (4AD)

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.

****

READ MORE
More Tune-yards
ACL Music Fest 2014 Saturday Interviews
Tune-Yards
3:30pm, RetailMeNot stage

Abby Johnston, Oct. 3, 2014

Phases & Stages
Tune-Yards
Nicki Nack (Record Review)

Abby Johnston, June 20, 2014

More Music Reviews
Friday ACL Fest Record Reviews
Flume
Skin (Record Review)

Kahron Spearman, Sept. 30, 2016

Friday ACL Fest Record Reviews
M83
Junk (Record Review)

Abby Johnston, Sept. 30, 2016

More by Audra Schroeder
SXSW Interactive Conference Quick Cuts
The Signal & the Noise
Statistician Nate Silver on more data, more problems

March 15, 2013

SXSW Film
SXSW Film Reviews: 'Kiss of the Damned'
Daily Reviews and Interviews

March 15, 2013

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Tune-yards

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

Updates for SXSW 2017

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)