The first time I ever saw the awkwardly shy, wonderfully cute and sickeningly talented Joanna Newsom around 2006 on a Later… with Jools Holland Episode, it was a find of epic proportions.
As the first words of the The Book of Right On fell out of this beautiful thing, cradling a ginormous harp and as everyone else in the room grimaced at her “squeeky” voice, It was then that I pretty much fell in love with the girl who “killed her dinner with karate“.
Loving Joanna Newsom can be an alienating experience as some of you may know. In the same way that being a fan of Tom Waits or Daniel Johnston or of Randy Newman or even Kate Bush can be. Though my Mum still maintains that she sounds like a drunk Lisa Simpson it is, never the less, a brilliantly perverse feeling, putting on Ys (Newsom’s second LP) for people and watching their face twist; sometimes even in wonder.
Good news fluttered on to the inter web this week then. Newsom’s eagerly awaited third record entitled Have One On Me will drop on the 23rd of Feb. Based on her recent live performances in Australia the record seemed to sit nestled, sound wise, between her punchy hook filled debut The Milk Eyed Mender and epic 5 song Ys (strung by the most excellent Beach Boy’s maestro Van Dyke Parks).
That was until very recent reports from a magazine who’s name I shall not mention, claim Have One On Me is in fact a triple LP. A triple.
After her debut cemented a devoted fan base, Ys garnered many critics praise and more fans for its unconventional instrumentation, voice and language it could only be speculated what the young songstress would come up with to top it. With the shortest track on the record being just shy of 8 minutes it certainly took some time to get your hooks into but after it did it was the epitome of of what people mean when they say “grower”.
Can she do it again?
Expect songs about bears and rivers, birds and seas and (if the rumors are true) times all of it by three.