In the last few years American singer-songwriter Charlyn Marie Marshall (known to the public as Cat Power) had to experience some complicated vicissitudes, including an harsh contrast with her record label, Matador, which was absolutely dissatisfied with the direction that the artist’s music was keeping. It’s not totally unexpected, therefore, that the new record from Cat Power, called Wanderer, is one of the most essential, minimal and poor of “special effects” of her entire discography, something which appears like a total rejection of what her previous producers wanted from her.
The experience that you experience listening to a record as Wanderer is basically that of a jump in the past, when the folk scene was full of singer-songwriters who painted small musical sketches with their guitar or piano, singing about the different experiences they lived while traveling along the roads of the United States of America.
What Cat Power offers today to her listeners is a timeless, austere and deeply intimate indie folk. Anyway, writing albums of this kind and evoking intense feelings from just a few chords of the guitar and a handful of rhymes, is not for everyone. The songs of Wanderer carry the weight of all the experiences and the strength of an author who has gone through different musical phases and who eventually recorded the album that she wanted to write, without thinking of what the public, and the producers, expected to listen. And where this stream of consciousness meets the beauty of gentle and delicate folk melodies, we can enjoy moments of pure ecstasy.
Wanderer is available for streaming on Spotify.
Highlights: In Your Face, Me Voy and Robbin Hood.