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Middle Cyclone by Neko Case
Released: Feb 2009
Label: Anti/Epitaph
Her rich alto has always delivered a visceral gut shot, but with Middle Cyclone Neko Case continues to emerge as a songwriter who truly knows how to wield the commanding instrument. When she sings "My love has never lived indoors/ I had to drag it home by force," on "Vengeance Is Sleeping," it's a nod to this record's salty themes (Mother Nature, a killer whale, and prison girls cameo). As she stomps through the elaborately produced country-inflected rock, the smattering of threats ("I will punch you in your face") disenfranchised come-ons and desperate rage is intoxicating.
Nate Cavalieri

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