Lullaby For Liquid Pig
I’ve been told that Lisa Germano’s music is hard to get into, and I’m not going argue with that assertion now that I’ve listened to Lullaby For Liquid Pig. I’m rather proud that I’ve avoided her music thus far, actually (I’ve stubbornly not listened to an ex’s Lisa Germano mix tape for a year now) — she’s such a vaguely trendy artist that it seems an inevitable fact that I’d own all her CDs. But I don’t.
That’s besides the point, really, except for one key word,vague, which is the best descriptor I have for this record. Vague and awkward. It’s a haze, a wash of sound; Germano twirls from song to song on Lullaby, encapsulating the headspinning relentlessness of addiction (the album’s common theme) rather well. Some of it’s really beautiful, some deftly orchestrated, and some expertly sculpted. But there’s also stilted, seemingly-forced songwriting on display (why do Germano’s melody lines sometimes sound so desperately contrived?); and in patches, the sparsity and fuzziness of the arrangements is frustrating. I suspect that this is intentional — the record captures a mood, and it does so with skill (due in part to top-class self-production), but proceedings are too domestically personal to really show off what Germano can do. It’s an album that demonstrates perfectly the distinction between empathising with music and meaningfuly connecting with it, and it proves that the former often leaves one feeling unfulfilled.
Or maybe (the thought has grown inside me as I’ve been writing this) I’m just scared of how accurately Lullaby for Liquid Pig reminds me of what being chronically abusive with drugs (or anything addictive) is like. The more I think about it, the more I feel it could be a combination of this second thought and my first response; and maybe it’s the engendering of that internal uncertainty that is Germano’s greatest triumph here.