Homeland (Deluxe Version)

Homeland (Deluxe Version)

While Laurie Anderson has carved out a niche as a creator of peculiar tone poems and electronic art-rock, she is also adept at making cultural observations that never break down into platitudes or rants. The beauty of her music is how she successfully integrates so many points of musical view into one place. Homeland, her first album since Live At Town Hall NYC, recorded two weeks after September 11, is her most accessible in decades. The tunes were developed on the road and feature an impressive cast from Tuvan throat singers and Igil players from the group Chirgilchin to guests such as husband and co-producer Lou Reed, John Zorn, Rob Burger, Omar Hakim and Antony Hegarty. Out front, however, is Anderson’s electronically manipulated voice, harmonizing alongside Kieran Hebden’s and Peter Scherer’s keyboards and Reed’s distorted guitars. Highlights include the synthetic pop grace of “Thinking of You,” the frustrated-with-the-marketing-system computerized dance groove of “Only an Expert” and the sparkling evening sunset tinkle of “Bodies In Motion.” Anderson deserves a wider audience. She may once again receive one.

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