poison to the mind


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Saw Martha Wainwright on Saturday night, her third show in Sydney: presumably on the strength of a Leonard Cohen tribute at the Opera House (and one show supporting her family) in January, as I didn't even know the album was out here until Friday. Her voice is obviously the major feature of her recordings, but it's even more remarkable live. It's allowed to be at the front of the sound there, too - she was accompanied only by herself on acoustic guitar, and sometimes her producer Brad Albetta on double bass, baby grand or bass guitar - but her singing is noteworthy in and of itself, plus she shows off a little, jerking away from or panning across the microphone to get interruption or tail-off effects.

For someone on their first album, she's got plenty of material to perform, too. we missed support Josh Ritter (the Herald said good things) just because she went on early enough to accomodate a 2½ hour set. Loads of low-key banter, joking with the sound guy (who'd convinced Albetta to wear a fishing hat strung with corks at one point), covers of her dad, her mum, Laughing Len... like you'd expect. I haven't listened yet myself, but check out this session for Radio National, recorded during the week.

Martha Wainwright - live on The Deep End

The album's actually cheaper in shops than it is at the gigs (though there was a sign promising she'd come out and sign it). You can't get the EPs out here at all.

Here, for no particular reason, is a song by a band that don't exist anymore. The song was on their first album, but this is a different recording from the Cop It Sweet compilation. Indie pop with girlie vocals, we're keeping it female this week. Big update tomorrow.

Half Miler - Another Relationship Fatality

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