November 20, 2002

Yesterday I downloaded what I presume is the new single from Cat Power's forthcoming album, You Are Free. I've listened to "He War" maybe seven or eight times since then. I'm sucked in by the circularity/repetitiveness of it, the way the verses explode into stunning choruses in a slow bloom rather than a predictably disorienting loud-soft-loud pattern. The "hey hey hey" that it all builds up to -- "it" being the simple, heavy, martial rhythms and and tense, reserved melodies -- starts out as a single point and fractures into a throaty multipart chorale on its trip up the arc. And throughout, the riffs stay the same, but the verse parts and the bridges begin to bleed over to the chorus in layers, until it's clear that they weren't really "verses" after all, just introductory statements of themes she'd planned to use later.

(Thanks to Fluxblog for the tip.)