Take a listen: Contrast Podcast
Or, to get straight to the point, here’s basically what I said:
“… For some reason, this is my year of female singers. Those who know me, know I like marble-mouthed, whiskey-fueled, dust-choked male singers, often with a does of dereliction to diction. But this year, there are at least two, maybe three women on my top ten so far. Cary Ann Hearst, Bethany Larson & The Bees Knees, and Julia Klee. Chicagoan Klee is the most recent of these singers I’ve come across and is my submission to the Contrast Podcast’s “Best of 2011 – so far.”
One reason I’ve chosen the song, “Drunken Chess,” is because it has my favorite lyric of the year – so far…
“Drunken Chess” comes from the album, Big Charade, which starts off pleasantly, with three musically – but not always lyrically – up beat, catchy, lyrically smart, country/folk, pop songs. Great stuff. But then comes “Drunken Chess”…
At this point, the whole album becomes else – more emotionally dangerous, more compelling, and more satisfying.
Cudo’s to the blog Big Rock Candy Mountain, whose review of a live show spurred me to pick this up. By this time I thought I’d just be globbing on to a Julia Klee frenzy. But no. Seems like everyone else is still missing out on this great record. A great record, if you like songs about lost love, being used, left, hurt, or heartbroken. Or, if you’re a fan of singers like Dolly Parton, Kelly Hogan, Emmylou Harris, Neko Case… and yes, the album stands up to those comparisons.”