Thursday, May 03, 2007

Incoming: St. Vincent & John Vanderslice at Largo, Thursday May 10

Annie Clark comes from a mob background. As a member of two sprawling collectives (Polyphonic Spree and Sufjan Stevens’ touring band), she’s been a lone voice amid large ensemble casts. But when Clark transforms into St. Vincent, she sheds the multicolored robes and cheerleader outfits of those other acts to step forward and reveal her own lovely persona, and it’s quite a sight to behold. Her debut, Marry Me (on Beggars Banquet, due in July), is rife with gorgeous arrangements that invoke similarly expansive artists such as Kate Bush and Tori Amos at their most inspired, all performed with an uplifting, childlike glee. She supports John Vanderslice, late of ’90s alt-rockers MK Ultra, who has forged a stellar live rep with his clever troubadour tendencies, four-tracked daydreams and wry wordplay. Bill Gates, beware...

(Originally published in the LA Weekly, 5/07)