Born Funky Born Free | Loene Carmen

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About the artist

Loene Carmen sits in an intangible, magical, rarefied space, somewhere between Tom Waits and Dolly Parton' Australian Stage It's always been about the and danger, knowing and innocence, sex and longing, and love – both sacred and profane... Loene Carmen's individual mix of torch blues, gothic country, with occasional outbreaks of smoky nightclub has seduced many who hear it. She sings it, you believe her. And that's enough. Drum Media Carmen's voice saunters all silk and smoke, a brazen beacon of breathy blues shining out from a murky late night dive …a magnetically absorbing album…. Carmen can imbue her musical narratives with a glistening visual quality that renders the average comparable work a dull monotone text in comparison…the beauty of the French chanteuse and the intensity of the Dirty Three. It Walks Like Love is more than a record – it's an intense, passionate and periodically confronting statement. You can almost see and feel the love walking beside you. Patrick Emery, Beat '…sensual noir narratives…cinematic…' Daily Telegraph 'Intoxicating' Jeff Jenkins, Music Australia Guide ' …striking, smoky and suggestive …Completely compelling.' Kluster '… would have Serge Gainsbourg chasing her down any Parisienne street… It Walks Like Love is like a sun-bleached, neon-soaked dusty road trip, stopping at every sleazy smoky roadhouse, cheap hotel and dirty diner on the way. J Mag '…delicate music, sparse but occasionally riding huge waves of feedback and distortion…varied, passionate and distinctive…' mess and noise '…timeless and haunting…' '…a terrific collision …at times it is starkly restrained to allow the late-night longing languidly flow, while at others it elevates it into a rousing ride of lust and redemption with bracing bass and buzzing guitars.' '…a cavalcade of personalities … shimmers like a mirage on a hot road' Time Off '…a slice of genuine Americana…sultry vocals and intelligent lyrics continue to intertwine with raw guitars throughout the ten tracks, and the quality never dips, even for the slightest second… It Walks Like Love is a truly outstanding record and, with it, Loene Carmen has not only created her finest piece of work to date, but also one of the albums of the year so far. Loene Carmen's music has always carried a certain personal intimacy about it, whether it was the lo-fi dreams of Slight Delay or soft chaos in her previous record Rock n' Roll Tears. Regardless of the recordings in question, Carmen always manages to convince you that she could be your girlfriend – whispering her darkest and brightest secrets right into your ear. Its late afternoon and her head is leaning on your shoulder with your one arm driving across the desert plains. This is the day you finally propose to her, you pull into the closest Motel 6 and bend down on one knee outside the neon light flashing "No Vacancy". Why do you do this? – Because for her fourth record It Walks Like Love what she was whispering into your ear on that car ride are the best things she's ever said. … …the highlight comes with track four, "Gauloises Blues"…the kind of song that plays at either the opening or closing credits of a Loene Carmen retrospective documentary somewhere down the track when people finally realise what a national treasure she is…her lyrics are top notch which goes to show that Gareth Liddiard isn't the only lyrical genius in Australia. At the end of the day – what you have here is ten really fucking good songs with really fucking good musicians with really fucking good production by Burke Reid. It amazes me that it was apparently jammed out in a few days in the studio. I guess the old Palace Records by Will Oldham were done in similar time frames but never were they this polished and constructed. Forget your Hail Marys and your Our Fathers. If you've neglected buying any of Carmen's three brilliant solo albums thus far, fear not. By picking up "It Walks Like Love" all will be forgiven. Amen. Artground