Cat Power -‘Sun’ (Matador)
Well, it’s been four years since her last album (Jukebox, her second collection of interpretations), and six years since her last album of original material (The Greatest). But whatever the dramas in her personal life, the artist also known as Chan Marshall has bestowed her new album upon us. Damn fine it is, too.
How good? Well, put it this way: I don’t go out and buy every album that gets submitted to me on vinyl (especially when the RRP is over £20). So yes, it’s an album I was pleased to buy. A fantastic collection of songs, underpinned by that voice.
Though The Greatest may be regarded as being her ‘soul’ album, that smokey voice is still present. And the songwriting is still strong. At over ten minutes, penultimate track ‘Nuthin’ But Time’ may be seen as the centrepiece of the album, though the opening track ‘Cherokee’ and ‘3,6,9’ are pretty damn good, too. For my money, the standout track is ‘Ruin’ – sassy as hell, and with a catchy as anything piano motif that is a very pleasant earworm. One of the best tracks this year, in fact.
Doubtless there will be those who grumble that in being more accessible than some of her other work that it isn’t as good as earlier albums. Sod them. An excellent place to start, if you haven’t heard her before -and a fine album in its own right.
Sun is out now on Matador