Joan As Police Woman - To Survive
Being a sometime member of both Rufus Wainwright’s band and Antony and the Johnsons, and the ex of Jeff Buckley to boot, did much for Joan Wasser in terms of recognition when she launched her debut album two years ago. However, this may mean that double the hard work might be required in the long term before she can step out of such prominent shadows.
To Survive, in that case, represents a good year or two’s graft. It’s a mournful record, but a strong one, perhaps more comparable to Carly Simon minus the easy pop sensibilities than to contemporaries such as Cat Power. Wasser’s default setting is the lush, lonely piano ballad, like the rich-sung New York loft shuffles of ‘Honor Wishes’ and the title track, yet she does the amiably upbeat too on occasion, like the Wainwright-featuring ‘To America’.