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MUSIC REVIEW: AMANDA PALMER – There Will Be No Intermission

Label: 8ft. Records

Release Date: March 8, 2019

Rating: 94%

Reviewed by: Todd “Toddstar” Jolicoeur

While I am a huge fan on Amanda Palmer’s previous solo studio efforts Who Killed Amanda Palmer and Theatre Is Evil, I was unsure what motherhood would do to Ms. Palmer’s outlook and musical journey.  Rest assured – it has made her more intense while softer… more vocal while more silent (literally)… in two words, just more.  With a brief musical interlude between each track to help transition the music, the twenty tracks are full of cool musical pieces with ten great songs that incorporate Amanda’s vocals and lyrical prowess.  While all of the interludes bring a different flavor to the disc and help introduce the succeeding track, the real fun in the disc is absorbing the lyrics and delivery.  “All The Things” leads into “The Ride” which comes off as a melancholy track driven by piano and vocals that crescendo in and out at appropriate times, punctuating the lyrics and emotion that steered the words from Palmer’s imagination and onto paper.  “Congratulations” opens the door for “Drowning In The Sound” and the vibe of this track is heavier, but made lighter by the sound of Amanda’s vocals over top the heavy handed piano accompaniment.  “Life’s Such A Bitch Isn’t It” is a great lead in for “Judy Blume,” which is one of my favorite tracks on the disc.  The way Amanda uses her vocals on this track drew me in on first listen and have kept my attention every time I have spun this disc since.  The duet of her voice and the piano are soothing and the combination is good for the soul.  “There Will Be No Intermission” is a cool intro for the droning track “Machete.”  The magic of this track is the repetitive groove that accentuates the tracks and shifts gears throughout, giving us a glimpse of Amanda’s softer vocal side.  When I saw Amanda’s tour date in Detroit earlier this year, the delivery of this track was powerful and resonated with me.  “You’d Think I Shot Their Children” is cool and keeps a lighter sound intact leading into “A Mother’s Confession.”  This track features a full group – the ‘Baby Didn’t Die’ choir – performing background as the song winds toward the end adding depth to the track and the lyrics.  This track builds from opening to close, over the course of a very emotionally charged 10:37.

“Hold On Tight, Darling” takes us into “The Thing About Things” which is a great track that showcases Amanda’s ukulele skills as well as her ability to carry a song with a simple musical accompaniment.  The lyrics are poignant – I wish more people would hear them, as they were therapeutic for me in reconciling the want versus the need for ‘things.’  “Feeding The Dark” into “Bigger On The Inside” has a grandiose opening sound that shifts into a ukulele-driven contagious track that keeps things flowing while shifting the vibe of the disc.  The almost monotone vocal through the verse grabs you and challenges you to not listen to the more 8 minute track.  “You Know The Statistics” has a very ethereal feel to it that transitions nicely into the beautiful “Voicemail For Jill.”  The piano accompaniment flows in the background like a serene river dotting a peaceful landscape, giving the lyrics the perfect tapestry to decorate.  This song found its way into my head and heart quickly and is a go-to every time I listen to the disc.  While none of the tracks here have the swagger and campy vibe of songs like “Do It With A Rockstar,” don’t mistake the more stripped back sound for weakness – each of these tracks, especially “Voicemail For Jill,” packs as much punch as anything else Palmer has done thus far in her musical career.  “They’re Saying Not To Panic” clears the path musically for “Look Mummy, No Hands” with a transition into the musical tone of the latter track with sounds that have a youthful, almost child-like texture to them.  While a live version of this track was available previously, this studio version has a great sound that helps tie together pieces of the various songs.  This is the lone track on the disc not penned by Palmer.  Closing out the twenty tracks is “Intermission Is Relative” and “Death Thing.”  The final track is interesting, as it seems mellower than most on the disc, but closes out in grand fashion with an orchestral vibe that swirls until the final lyrics in sung.  With a disc that times out at 78:00 and just over eight minutes of transitional music over the course of the collection, the almost seven minute average for the songs are surprising fresh and do not seem overbearing or long.

Tracklisting: All The Things – The Ride – Congratulations – Drowning In The Sound – Hold On Tight, Darling – The Thing About Things – Life’s Such A Bitch Isn’t It – Judy Blume – Feeding The Dark – Bigger On The Inside – There Will Be No Intermission – Machete – You Know The Statistics – Voicemail For Jill – You’d Think I Shot Their Children – A Mother’s Confession – They’re Saying Not To Panic – Look Mummy, No Hands – Intermission Is Relative – Death Thing






Category: CD Reviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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