Monday, September 18, 2006

Antony & The Johnsons - I Am A Bird Now

Move over, Mountain Goats. Jen likes you now - and there is a new voice in town that drives her nuts.

Antony sounded good to me on Current 93's The Beautiful Dancing Dust, so I decided to finally pick up I Am A Bird Now, one of those hyped albums from last year I just never got. "I hate that thing he does with his voice. It's like he can't really sing," says Jen. For me, the jury is still out. I think his voice is rich and soulful, but yeah, that thing he does...

Anyway, there are at least two songs on this album that make it worth it (as if annoying Jen by playing it isn't enough): Hope There's Someone and For Today I Am A Boy. The first is a gorgeous, haunting plea for strength and companionship in the face of loneliness and death. "Oh, I'm scared of the middle place between light and nowhere. I don't want to be the one left in there, left in there..."

The second is not your mother's indie ballad. It's the story of a boy looking forward to a bright and wonderful future as... a beautiful woman. The ambiguous sexuality of Antony informs much of his music (his childhood hero Boy George does a guest vocal turn on You Are My Sister and My Lady Story "is one of breast amputation") but this song, and this album, like any good piece of music, isn't only about what it's about. Released: February 1, 2005. TRANSFORMED.

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