Alt folkie Feist to play Glasgow's Royal Concert Hall
The Broken Social Scenester to play tracks from latest album Metals
Leslie Feist isn’t the first artist successfully to balance the welcome commercial exposure a ubiquitous hit song can yield with a desire for continuing creative integrity and freedom. But not many manage it quite as gracefully as the Canadian has with her solemn and reflective fourth album Metals.
The follow-up to 2007’s The Reminder – which was driven to over 2.5 million worldwide sales by the elementally catchy ‘1234’, of iPod nano advert and singing with Elmo on Sesame Street fame – Metals arrived last October a considered four years after its predecessor. Recorded following an 18-month break from music during which time Feist claims to have deliberately forgotten how to play her old songs, it’s a triumph of inventive downbeat country-rock and alt-folk that shrewdly strengthens her breakout appeal without sounding burdened by the need to write an obvious hit along the lines of ‘1234’. It’s allowed her draw as a live performer to normalise to the point where she can play venues of a smaller size than those she toured last time round, trying to make her songs carry in arenas being an experience Feist admits to having taken only limited pleasure from.
She is a sometime member of Canadian indie-rock hipster mafia Broken Social Scene and a former flatmate of delightfully dirty electro-clash queen Peaches, who counts as her chief collaborator Chilly Gonzales – an eccentric rapping piano maestro rarely seen out of his dressing gown and slippers. So Feist was hardly likely to go all Sheryl Crow on us, was she? Heartbreaking songs such as ‘The Bad in Each Other’ and ‘Get It Wrong, Get It Right’ are new landmark moments in an idiosyncratic and intriguing career, and the perfect forum for an instantly recognisable and rewarding voice with a tone as rich as the most precious of metals.
Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow, Tue 27 Mar.