Jolie Holland, Sallie Ford & the Sound Outside | Lincoln Hall | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader

Jolie Holland, Sallie Ford & the Sound Outside Early Warnings (Music) Soundboard

When: Tue., July 12, 8 p.m. 2011

I've always found Jolie Holland's weird hybrid strain of Americana attractive on paper. Literate, confident, and knowledgeable about her source material, she's able to make music that sounds contemporary by mashing up bits of old jazz, country, and blues—and her bizarre vocals are just as thorough a hodgepodge. The regular comparisons to Billie Holiday aren't without merit, but on Holland's new album, Pint of Blood (Anti-), the Lady Day influence is only one quirk among a slew of swoops, curlicues, hiccups, catches, and other eccentricities of phrasing. If I didn't have the lyrics to prove otherwise, the way she twists, elongates, mumbles, and aspirates her words would lead me to assume she was singing in an un­familiar tongue. Though Holland's vocals are definitely an acquired taste, I think I may finally be acquiring it—the new album is terrific, an elegant stroll arm-in-arm with the music of the first decade of the 20th century, laced with bleak, poetic lyrics that lend a melancholy edge to the beauty. —Peter Margasak

Price: $14

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