Friday, February 29, 2008

ANNI ROSSI “My Grandmother Was A Church Organist” (Folktales)

Chris/Whitman unearths (reissues?) a hissy little C30 by this precious itinerant viola virtuoso that’s probably one of her more likable discography entries, at least for those listeners not already heavily into the hyper-literate coy/cute indie-folk approach espoused by Rossi and Joanna Newsom and Mirah and The Decemberists and The Blow and a thousand other college radio spokespersons. ‘Cause unlike some of her more Pro-Toolsy “this is my music” full-lengths, My Grandmother... was recorded in 2004 in a practice space at CAL Arts on a VERY dusty thrift store tape recorder, so every song is harshly distorted with hiss, raw room ambiance, and cheap compression, thus distracting from a lot of the self-conscious lyrical preening and weepy melody choices. Whether intentional or not, the fact that the whole thing sounds like shit really saves a lot of the songs from ending up in the dorm-room sob soundtrack bin. There’s also some cheap-as-hell keyboard beats in a couple places that further muddy stuff up in an appealing way. It’s also dedicated to her deceased Grandma Lorraine so a lot of my nitpicking is obviously sort of beside the point. Comes with a full-color mini-poster/drawing too if you’ve got some wall space yr lookin’ to fill.