Monday, September 3, 2012

#44: Kate Miller-Heidke - Curiouser (2008)

It's a drastic change from her earlier albums, while she draws more inspiration from Cyndi Lauper than anything. However, it doesn't sound anything like Lauper. It pulls from several different genres but at it's root is still a pop record. Kate brings her distinct vocals (operatic yet modern) to a fresh setting. Lyrically nothing's too deep - but it's fun. That could sum up the entire album, really fun. The more I hear Kate's voice the deeper I fall in love with it.

God's Gift to Women
What's cooler, the opening lick or Kate's deep question mark breath? "Used to being the guy that gets the girl, but if we were the last two people in the world, the human race would face extinction..." Then in comes incredibly cool and effective harmonies for the next lyric, "Before we'd get it on, honey." You knew the lyric was coming, but it's more blunt and much more entertaining than you though it could possibly be. I love the bridge - big percussion, muted guitar, and harmonies. It rocks, it grooves, it's fun. This woman knows how to sing, growl, and everything in between.

Caught in the Crowd
It won song writing awards but not nearly enough of them. It's a story that could be told in a cheeky/cheesy manner, but Kate finds the appropriate tone to keep it grounded. Let's not forget about the music - it's simply amazing. Great harmonies and a rich bass hold it down, but it's the story and vocal performance that made this song so good. Absolutely one of the best written songs I've ever heard. It tugs at the heard strings, which is nothing like...

Can't Shake it
The most fun track on the album. The pre-chorus, the chorus, the verses - it all rocks. While the verses breaks down, the humorous lyrics and excellent vocal performance by Kate keeps the listener engaged. If you don't bob your head, tap your toes, or sing along I'll question if you're human. "I execute the moonwalk like I stepped in shit - I just can't shake it, shake it, shake it."

All in all it's a shame more people haven't heard this album. While I enjoy her more folksy albums, this is absolutely my favorite. In terms of just fun pop records, this album is near the top of the heap. It's not shy to poke fun of itself nor does it run away from doing something interesting in a pop setting. Is it catchy? Pretty much. Is it fun? Pretty much? Is it worth listening to again and again? Pretty much, pretty much, pretty much.

Tomorrow's album: The Dave Brubeck Quartet's Time Out.

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