Album Review

Little Annie & Baby Dee – “State of Grace” – [Tin Angel Records]

Naysayer   3/18/2015   12-inch, A Library

Little Annie (aka Annie Anxiety). Baby Dee. “State of Grace”.
There are some times reviewing when I just have to sit back and take pause. Breathe and exhale and be thankful that I have been given the opportunity to listen to something of such profound beauty and depth. Such is the case with “State of Grace”, the 2012 release on Tin Angel Records. Little Annie and Baby Dee need little introduction. These women are heavy hitters in the field of post punk/dark cabaret. Little Annie has worked with Penny Rimbaud and Crass, Current 93, Coil, Nurse With Wound, Bim Sherman. She was the “house chanteuse” of Adrian Sherwood’s On-U Sound Records. Baby Dee started work as a performance artist in 1970 and has worked extensively with Antony Hegarty, David Tibet, and Andrew WK. And was for many years a tree surgeon.
This lush and sophisticated collaboration has both working on 10 songs filled with rich instrumentation and intelligent lyrics. Little Annie sings in her breathy, crackly, oh so stunning voice which is part Marianne Faithful, part Tom Waits, part Lotte Lenya. Pacing, inflection and enunciation sparkle the words of aging, change, loss, maintaining significance. Baby Dee’s piano and Hammond B3 work play with and highlight as well as float along side Little Annie’s singing. This is high standard piano work, like a new classical movement. Songs are orchestrated for small ensembles of wind and brass instruments as well as strings. Think dark cabaret at it’s finest, sounding Kurt Weill as well as Antony. To be sitting at a small table in an intimate club, candlelit, cocktails, and these two fine women performing would be wonderful. Listen. Close you eyes. You can be there.

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