Scout Niblett – It’s Time My Beloved 7″

scoutScout Niblett – It’s Time My Beloved 7″ (Drag City Records; released April 14th, 2009)

So I finally sat down to write a review of Scout Niblett’s new 7” and I realized that I have little to no experience reviewing music. Yes, I am a big fan of music and I have been buying records and forming opinions about them for the past twenty years or so. But have I ever actually tried to articulate on paper what those opinions are? No, not really. And as far as talking about musicality I don’t really know how qualified I am to do that. I feel like anything beyond saying “the guitars sound like ‘wah-wah’” and “the drums go ‘boom-duh-boom’” is just not possible.

For me music is about a feeling it evokes. I’d rather think about the emotions it can bring out than about how skillfully someone plays their instruments. I enjoy wondering what mindset the artist was in when they wrote the music and the lyrics. I suppose I’ll just stick to that when trying to review something.

I like Scout. I think she has a great voice and I think she rocks the guitar. I also really like that she seems so scrappy and weird. I went to see her once a few years ago when she opened for M. Ward and I saw her wandering around through the crowd before the show. Most people there that night were M. Ward fans so no one seemed to recognize her. She just stood around in this ugly wig, smoking cigarettes, being mousy. I thought it was pretty cool.

That all being said I like her latest release. It’s only two songs, but they are what I’ve come to enjoy about her music. The first track It’s Time is definitely the better of the two. She sings “See joy, hope, wishes and dreams, snuck out the back door, I didn’t see them leave” as the guitar and bass slowly build behind her voice. “My little bluebird, come land on my shoulder. Cuz I need help getting joy, hope, wishes and dreams to come back over” as the drums sneak in. The song fades out as eerily as it came in.

I found My Beloved to not be as satisfying. It’s kind of slow and heavy but not bad. Like most of Scout’s music, the songs are very moody. They kind of creep up on you, grab you, and take you on a spooky little journey through Scout‘s world. It’s good stuff and I’m looking forward to the next full length album.