Neko Case – Fox Confessor Brings the Flood (2006)
purchase this album
You know what? I’m wrong. A lot. And when I am, I don’t mind admitting it.
So, readers who reacted with shock and dismay when I panned The New Pornographers last year, please accept it as an olive branch when I say I’m meeting you halfway here: No, I still don’t like that Pornographers record, and no, I still don’t see what the big deal about A.C. Newman is.
But I’m officially digging the hell out of Fox Confessor Brings the Flood.
I’m not sure what else I can add to this. Neko Case is one of those artists who sells relatively few records in the real world, but enjoys gigantic stature in the blogosphere, so most of you were probably reading about this album long before it came out March 7th, and then read a whole bunch of ecstatic reviews afterwards, and you’re probably getting pretty sick of the whole thing just as I’m climbing onto the bandwagon. So I’ll keep this brief.
(Also, never let it be said that this space would even know how to try and be as hip as the folks at, oh, I don’t know, Pitchfork. Or Stereogum.)
In a lot of ways, Confessor feels like the record Jenny Lewis’ Rabbit Fur Coat wanted to be; it’s got a vaguely creepy American Gothic vibe, and songs like “Dirty Knife” are essentially 21st-century murder ballads. It helps that standard-bearers of the genre like Garth Hudson and Howe Gelb are on board, not to mention new kids on the dirty old block like Calexico. It gives the proceedings a more authentic feel.
It also helps that these are some rip-tootin’ good songs.
(Yes, I said “rip-tootin’.”)