Given Leslie Feist's history as a punk-turned-chanteuse indie princess, it may seem odd to say that the musician she reminds me of most is Sheryl Crow. But listening to The Reminder, Feist's eagerly anticipated follow-up to 2004's surprise hit Let It Die, I can't help but hear the same moving-target qualities that have always kept me from liking Crow more than I probably should.
As with Crow, whose admirably far-ranging music never gives me a clear sense of an artistic self, Feist seems to be an almost pomo case study of form over content. Not that there's anything wrong with being eclectic, of course. But after a while, all the pleasing-to-the-ears sounds of folk, rock, and jazz flitting about her songs from track to track on The Reminder simply add up to a frustratingly incomplete picture of just who she is and what she's up to.
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