Oran Mor, Glasgow, Wed 26 Sep
If Leslie Feist has done one thing in her varied career that deserves to make her a star, it’s the day she spent shooting the video to her recent, mesmerisingly cheerful single ‘1234’. Google it or find it on her MySpace, because it’s a riot of sequinned catsuits and dazzling, large-scale dance choreography. You can never go wrong with a good dance sequence, can you?
For such an intuitively sweet and naturally folksy singer, it might come as a surprise to many that Nova Scotian Feist’s old flatmate and best friend in music is Merrill Nisker, otherwise known as Peaches. Yet it was Nisker who sounded more like Feist in those days, until she cemented her more mucky persona when the pair moved to Berlin with Canadian electronicist Gonzalez. The trio have constantly appeared on each others’ records, while Feist’s extended stay in Paris (she moved back to Toronto earlier this year) saw her work with Kings of Convenience. She’s also a sporadic member of Broken Social Scene.
All of which point to an artist who’s more familiar as a collaborator rather than an innovator, and that might have been the case when her first two albums Monarch (Lay Your Jewelled Head Down) (1999) and Let It Die (2004) were released to only a murmur of approval. Yet this year’s The Reminder – number two in Canada, 16 in the States – is a work of spirit and soul that finally, loudly demands attention for Feist in it’s own right. And yes, ‘1234’s on it.