Jenny Hval, Acteurs, Humminbird | Empty Bottle | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader

Jenny Hval, Acteurs, Humminbird Early Warnings (Music) Recommended Soundboard Image

When: Sun., Sept. 29, 7 p.m. 2013

It’s clear from the opening couplet of the title track (“That night I watched people fucking on my computer / Nobody can see me anyway”) that Jenny Hval’s second album under her own name, Innocence Is Kinky (Rune Grammofon), is going to be daringly personal. The Norwegian singer-songwriter gives plenty of nods to Kate Bush (the theatricality, the flair, and sometimes the pomp) and regularly ventures into poetry-slam territory, wrapping her airy, delicate vocals around jagged, faux-tribal postpunk noise just as easily as she weaves them into faint, crystalline guitar. Sometimes she allows her singing to float off into the far reaches of an arrangement, as though she’s whispering into the ear of someone across the room but you can hear everything perfectly; sometimes she gets right in your face with stark, unforgiving lyrics (“I want to sing like a continuous echo of splitting hymens,” for instance, from the chilling “Give Me That Sound”). The album can sometimes be difficult or puzzling, in that way Swans have of pulling a droning, repetitive lick out from under you (“I Got No Strings”), but I think it’s pretty safe to assume Hval would be fine with such a reception. As she should. —Kevin Warwick Acteurs and the Humminbird open.

Price: $10

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