Call for Essays About Any Aspect of Popular Culture, Present or Past

Music
cover art

Caitlin Canty

Neon Streets

(Self-released; US: 6 May 2010; UK: 13 Jun 2010)

Sincere vocals and intricate arrangements make Neon Streets, a seven-track EP from New York-based Caitlin Canty, a welcome addition to the singer-songwriter canon. On “Shore”, Canty’s vulnerability gives lines like “You don’t know which way you want the wind to blow” a rich texture, her trill echoing Kathleen Edwards’s song “Mercury”. The bridge is a triumph: a sublime key change anchors the song for a brief moment before Canty returns to singing about love adrift. Elsewhere, Canty throws it down on the rollicking country twang of “Two Hands”, a nice change of pace with the singer-guitarist tipping her hat to both independence (“She’s never had trouble getting the cap off the bottle”) and her own Vermont roots (“No sob stories / No Ben & Jerry’s”). Accompaniment from quintet Darlingside (who co-produced the EP) deserves props, with Harris Paseltiner’s cello-playing a true standout. His cello sashays wonderfully with a mandolin riff on track “Neon Streets”, and the opening melody to “In the Way” combines with Canty’s humming to make for the album’s saddest leitmotif. A cello and kick drum combo gives “Thin Moon” an eerie thump, and occasional back-up vocals (especially Don Mitchell’s harmonies on “Neon Streets”) help to pack plenty of emotional weight into the album’s short running time of 24 minutes. “The road keeps turning in her favor”, Canty sings on opening track “Halo”; if future albums with Darlingside—three others are in the works—deliver on the promise of Neon Streets, then Canty deserves her own career to take the same turn.

Rating:

Freeden is a graduate student in sociology. He lives in Oakland, CA. A former sixth grade teacher in Philadelphia, he once took some of his students to a Dizzee Rascal concert. They met the rapper after the show and found his accent perplexing.


discussion by
Comments
Now on PopMatters
PM Picks
Announcements

© 1999-2014 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters.com™ and PopMatters™ are trademarks
of PopMatters Media, Inc.

PopMatters is wholly independently owned and operated.