St. Vincent: All Born Screaming [Album Review]

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St. Vincent
All Born Screaming
Total Pleasure Records [2024]

Album Overview: Annie Clark, known as St. Vincent, has released her seventh studio album, All Born Screaming and it marks a significant moment as it’s the first album she’s self-produced. This seems to give her even more room to showcase a raw and unfiltered expression of her artistry. The album features a stellar lineup of collaborators, including Rachel Eckroth, Cate Le Bon, Josh Freese, and Dave Grohl. The album spotlights a diverse range of musical styles, including a Peter Gabriel like pop, prog rock, and even some harder edges that have an industrial rock shine to them. The record has an emotional depth that leads the listener through love, loss, and compassion. This larger musical map highlights a much more loose St. Vincent which also then is not quite as tight transitionally when compared to her past catalog. This will appeal to some fans and have others wishing there was a bit more structure.

Musical Style: St. Vincent’s musical style on All Born Screaming is bold and experimental. She pushes the boundaries of her sound, incorporating elements of rock, electronic, and avant-garde to create a dynamic and immersive listening experience.

Evolution of Sound: All Born Screaming is a progression in St. Vincent’s artistry, with a heightened sense of vulnerability and emotional depth. All Born Screaming represents a departure from St. Vincent’s previous sound, moving away from sharper corners and direct shifts in her music towards a more diverse and eclectic sonic canvas.

Artists with Similar Fire: While St. Vincent’s sound is unique, fans of experimental rock and avant-garde will find it aligning with artists like Bj√∂rk, David Bowie, Kate Bush, Peter Gabriel and PJ Harvey, who similarly push the boundaries of genre and style.

Pivotal Tracks: “Broken Man” serves as one of the stronger tracks on the album, with its intense energy and sonic industrial experimentation. The collaboration with Dave Grohl on “Flea” is another track that rises above with a musical interplay of instruments that grabs you more than the vocals. The closing title track is the longest song on the album and one of the most experimental as it features Cate Le Bon. The track has a very Talking Heads vibe to it for its first half and then transitions to a drone with choir type finish on its last half. The song highlights that St. Vincent is always looking for a new approach.

Lyrical Strength: St. Vincent’s lyrics on All Born Screaming are poignant and introspective, inviting listeners on a journey of self-discovery and emotional exploration. Her words resonate with honesty and vulnerability, while tackling themes of identity, desire, and resilience.

Daddy’s Home (2021) / Masseduction (2017) / St. Vincent (2014) / Brass Tactics (w/ David Byrne) (2013)

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Christopher Anthony
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