St. Vincent is full of these celebratory moments -- steeped in and fascinated by danger, by risks, even by pain. Take "Huey Newton" and "Regret" (arguably the most triumphant song after "Birth in Reverse"). "Huey" starts slow, like the descent into a drug-induced slumber. But what feels stilted gracefully ascends to this revelatory realm similar to a dream - "Pleasure dot loathing dot Huey dot Newton / oooh / it was a lonely lonely winter..." - and then, Clark jolts us into something else entirely, filled with gloriously grunge guitar and ferocity - "Entombed in a shrine of zeroes and ones / you know...", she snarls. The song's progression is definitely difficult to map, as you can tell by this brief attempt. Just know that "Huey" could be one of the best tracks of 2014.Birth in Reverse" - the clear, brave epitome ofthe album - you also have slow, slick ballads like "Severed Crossed Fingers" and "I Prefer Your Love." Nothing feels more personal than imagining your own body parts falling apart for your art - "Spitting our guts from their gears / draining our spleen over years / find my severed crossed fingers in the rubble there." However, "Prince Johnny" definitely stands out as the gorgeous darling ofSt. Vincent, with its velvety, ambient choir and dark character portrait.
Concerning the influence her collaboration with David Byrne on the LP,Love This Giant, Clarkspeaks admiringly of Byrne's fearlessness. She also talks about the thrill and impetus that their tour's choreographed stage routine gave her - she creditsSt. Vincent's undeniable danceability to this experience. "Digital Witness" in particular succeeds here, the mostLove This Giant-esque of the album, as well as "Birth" and "Rattlesnake." She puts her talent for writing intriguing but essentially pop melodies to work in St. Vincent, clearly reveling in her own reality.
"Birth in Reverse"[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0c5BhXdVBqw]