Neko Case & her Boyfriends
Furnace Room Lullaby
With Neko sprawled out on a concrete floor on the cover, and rifling through some poor passed-out sod’s wallet on the back, you get the feeling that Ms. Case is some sort of rough-and-tumble punk rock goddess. Well, those days are over (mostly), and what’s here is a tasty selection of countrified numbers that have more to do with crying in the parking lot and talking the cops out of taking your boyfriend away than line dancing. On Furnace Room Lullaby , Neko Case comes off as a tough cooke with a soft, tender filling, especially with tracks like “Mood to Burn Bridges,” “Twist The Knife,” and “Set Out Running.” In an era where top-charting “country” artists are nothing more than bad pop with a twang, Furnace Room Lullaby is a refreshing return to roots, the sounds of a woman laying her feelings on the line with a voice as pure as the crick in the woods and a band that’s hotter than the barn burning down.
Bloodshot Records, 3039 W. Irving Park, Chicago, IL 60618-3538; http://www.bloodshootrecords.com/