No, they're not for everyone. Yes, sometimes it sounds like a circus rave in a toybox, and it's not what you would call relaxing. But it's uplifting, triumphant and inquisitive. And, in the face of frequent critical antipathy and hostility, it's just good to see two strong-minded women paying absolutely no heed and continuing to make the music they feel compelled to make.»
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CocoRosie now introduce their fifth album, 'Tales Of A Grass Widow', produced in collaboration with Icelandic composer Valgeir Sigursson and enriched by a whole host of guest performances. It's a brave record, synthesizing electronic and organic sound to convey a futuristic, back-to-nature feeling. The sisters boldly tackle topics most wouldn't dare including child abuse, drawing parallels between the treatment of children, especially girls, as disposable and the destruction of the earth's resources. Amongst the 11 tracks that weave together to create 'Tales of a Grass Widow' is 'Gravediggress,' whose recent release to the web saw CocoRosie warmly welcomed back by fans and critics alike. It's a foreboding track, representative of the album's overarching theme, the tale of an imagined conversation between an abandoned child and an outcast old woman. The young girl asks the Gravediggress to bury her love in the ground for safekeeping. With a wistful pump organ introduction, Bianca imparts the entreating child's words, and Sierra, in haltering, but clear tones sings for the old woman. Their voices blend and overlap, suggesting the woman and child are the same person. Simple piano chords accompany their vocals, with chimes and a marching drum rhythm composed of beat box from CocoRosie's longtime collaborator, Tez. Friend and sometime collaborator Antony Hegarty, evoking the voice of Mother Nature, sings on the record's second track, 'Tears for Animals' and the album closer, 'Poison.' 'Child Bride' awakens the image of grass blowing outside the window soothing a five-year-old girl given away by her family; In 'After the Afterlife' the narrator recalls details from the physical world now out of reach; wet snails, moth wings and ashes from a day lit fire. 'Roots Of My Hair' describes a solitary child happy with the company of a sparrow.
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