Jenny Lewis - Acid Tongue
- Artist: Jenny Lewis
- Album: Acid Tongue
- Label: Warner
- Year of Release: 2008
- ME Rating:
- Reviewed by: deatheyesforkiley on 2008-10-08
Jenny Lewis is back on here own with her second solo effort Acid Tongue. This album is heavily, heavily front loaded. The first six songs are terrific but, from there it is downhill. Acid Tongue sets the tone early on with its folky and almost psuedo-gosepel feel.
It opens with the very familiar, yet very beautiful song entitled "Black Sand." It then switches pace to "Pretty Bird." This particular song, with its soothing tones and slow moving tempo, goes down much easier than "Black Sand." You then skate through tempo changing as you pass through songs such as; "The Next Messiah" and "Bad Man's Wolrd." It is then that the album reaches its peak with a song dubbed "Acid Tongue." From the first twenty seconds it is obvious why this is the single. It is a beautiful effort that takes you through a classic melody with its slow moving tempo and its awe inspiring vocals and delivery. This song shows off everysingle reason Jenny Lewis is the perfect songstress we all love her for being. But, in being herself she raises the tempo again with a fast moving folk song "See Fernando." After a couple more clicks you reach a song called "Carpet Bagger." At about the one minute and say twenty second mark of this song you hear a voice that you will recognize immediately, it is that of, Elvis Costello. This is truly a highlight of the album even though he doesn't deliver everything you expect. This with a toe tapping diddy called "Jack Killed Mom,"rounds out the tailside of the album in a pretty mediocre way.
Overall, Acid Tongue is worth every penny, even if it is not as good as Rabbit Fur Coat. Jenny Lewis truly took a cue from Connor O'berst when she turned to the more folky and at times very up-tempo almost country sound on this solo effort. This album is good but, it is not all it should've been which says alot, because Acid Tongue is in no means a bad album. The problem here is that we expect perfection from Jenny Lewis.
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on 2009-04-07 tosnob Said:
Okay, I'm going to be upfront with you: I picked Jenny Lewis' solo debut Rabbit Fur Coat as my favorite album of 2006. So please keep in mind that everything I have to say about the forthcoming follow-up, Acid Tongue, is filtered through that prism.
Acid Tongue is a schizophrenic album. On the first third Lewis channels a her inner dark 60's style soul singer, with results that tend to sound like second rate Adele or Amy Winehouse. Yes, on tracks like "Pretty Bird", and "Badman's World" it is indeed as bad as it sounds.
It gets even worse on the 'American Gothic' epic "The Next Messiah", a song that features three very distinct movements. The false endings are enough to drive the listener insane.
During the second section of the album, Lewis returns to the rootsy Americana that made her debut with the Watson Twins so charming.
"Acid Tongue" is a country infused ballad that features Chris Robinson and Jonathan Rice on backing vocals. The rowdy, Spanish tinged country ditty "Fernando" is a tremendous stomper. "Carpetbaggers" shows off Lewis at her best. It's a fantastically fun Grand Ol' Opry-worthy country tune.
The final part demonstrates that Acid Tongue is definitely an album in dire need of an identity as we move from bad 70's AM radio ballad ("Trying My Best To Love You") to a smoldering country Gospel frenzy ("Jack Killed Mom"), to a closer that's little more than a throwaway ("Sing a Song for Them").
Throughout the entire album the production is slicker and the music lusher than on Rabbit Fur Coat. However, the resulting recordings are far less intimate and less endearing than the album's predecessor.
The lesson we learn from Acid Tongue is that Jenny Lewis, when not accompanied by Rilo Kiley, is best served sticking with the rootsy alt. country that allows her charm to come shining through.
Acid Tongue is my most disappointing album of 2008.
on 2008-10-16 Symphony Said:
Love this girl's voice.
on 2008-10-08 DeathEyesForKiley Said:
Yeah good point, the reason i wanted it is because Elvis Costello and M. Ward showed up on it. Also, it runs between 9 and 12 dollars from what ive seen here.
on 2008-10-08 dscanland Said:
Hey Gabe, Good review. One problem though, you open up stating that the album is "Heavily, heavily front loaded", emphasizing heavily. Then at the end you state that Acid Tongue is worth every penny. Might be better to suggest key tracks to download rather than getting the whole album. I don't want to pay $15-20 for half a good album.