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Rasputina | Cabin Fever | review | alternative | rock | Lollipop


"Cabin Fever!" (Instinct)
by Jamie Kiffel

From the warped larynxes of baby dolls to the uncoiling innards of music boxes, the glorification of entropy is here. Orchestrated by its queens, Rasputina, the rhythmic cacophony of Cabin Fever! celebrates the beauty of venomous decay while digging up sex and power from fresh, pretty deaths.

Rotting-doll lover Melora Creager warbles like a child being played with a bow, charming and frightening at once. Famous for their three "Goth cellos," the group have continued venturing out of exclusively string-bound territory, however, with electronic insect noise, heavy bass, and driving beats. The smell of death still permeates every track. Yet the sweet stink never gets tiresome, thanks to Rasputina's uncanny ability to sniff out increasingly bizarre permutations of the subject a la Edward Gorey. "Gingerbread Coffin" is typical of these underbelly-of-society ladies' work: It's a sugary paean to a little doll with "special powers," found in the grass. "She'll rise," Creager sings in a childlike whine, describing the black mass in the woods where the doll bound girls' hands together with old rubber bands. "Thimble Island" jigs along like an Irish tune electrified, describing a place where the singer will meet her true love... and possibly, since she's "never heard of girls returning," her death. "State Fair," with its synthesized, fuzzed-out carnival melody, captures the weird world of carnies - and dating them. Of course, the singer is "never ever, never ever coming home."

More enticingly weird ideas are presented in "Hunter's Kiss," the love song of a deer describing being shot by a hunter (and enjoying it), and the charmingly strange "PJ+Vincent & Matthew+Bjork," a perversely erotic "celebrity double-date." Like a mangled car wreck filled with jack-in-the-boxes, it's hard to know whether to laugh or scream, but nearly impossible to turn away.

For all its talk of death, this is a sexy album with gutsy deliveries suggesting that, for all its tiny stillness, the doll in the coffin really does have powers.

She'll seduce you into looking closer.


Then the dare: Kiss her.

Can you help it?

Hear what happens when lips meet decay, and Rasputina turns death into a deliciously naughty pleasure.


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