Music News

Kaki King

When her songs first reached the public ear, Kaki King, who shares this bill with the Mountain Goats, seemed on the road to becoming that rarest of birds: a female guitar virtuoso. Albums such as 2004's Legs to Make Us Longer are built upon complex, primarily acoustic instrumentals in which she regularly locates beauty within sonic darkness. After establishing herself in this mode, however, she shifted gears, opting for more electric-guitar playing and composing songs featuring an element she'd largely eschewed: lyrics. This year's Dreaming of Revenge reflects this shift. On it, King juxtaposes wordless interstitials like "Montreal" with a series of eccentric vocal tracks — "Saving Days in a Frozen Head" being the most promising of an erratic lot. Many of her fans would undoubtedly prefer that she reverse course. But even if the jury's still out on her artistic experiment, she deserves credit for again heading in a direction no one expected.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts