The better half of writer, Neil Gaiman; superstar Amanda Palmer and The Grand Theft Orchestra are treating fans and new listeners with their latest effort: Theatre Is Evil. Utilizing the power of crowdfunding, the 15-track epic record is being offered for free download. Yes, it’s all FREE!
True to Amanda “F**king” Palmer fashion, the album is extravagant, flamboyant, eclectic and epic-ly awesome! You’ll either love it or absolutely hate it. This is the third studio album for the singer. It was recorded in Australia with producer, John Congleton, on board.
Pooling up more than a million dollars ($1,192,793 to be exact,) Amanda Palmer has proven just how solid her fanbase is. I was reading through various reviews for this and there were only two dominant reactions: people either praised it or they absolutely hated it. That’s no surprise, however, the record itself is a hodge-podge of musical textures. It’s sad, funny, serious, angry and just a lot of fun IF you can get with her musical style.
In fact if you’re new to her, you might want to check out her previous work with The Dresden Dolls or her solo efforts, Who Killed Amanda Palmer or Amanda Palmer Goes Down Under, first before jumping on this one. It’ll give you a clear picture of what you’re up against.
Moving forward, Theatre is Evil opens with the piano rock ensemble, Smile (Pictures or It Didn’t Happen.) The cut is armed with a slow rock tempo that’s constantly hyped up with loud textures, clashing like big waves in the background. In fact, the more I listen to this I keep imagining Amanda bashing on the pianos with a backdrop of real live ocean waves slamming hard against strong rocks. There’s an encompassing feel to the track that makes it seem as if it’s bigger than it is.
Meanwhile, The Killing Type starts to pick up the tempo and by the time you reach Trout Heart Replica, you would have fallen under a hypnotic gaze that’s called Amanda Palmer. The latter, particularly is gut wrenching. It captures a very raw emotion while swirling with great layers of sound courtesy of the Grand Theft Orchestra.
Overall, the album isn’t something you’ll fall for the first time around. Pop it for a play two or three times first. Like getting to know somebody new, you need time to peel back the layers and examine the contents.
Theatre is Evil lays out all of the contents for your perusing. It encourages you to pick it up, shake it around, turn it upside down or even attempt to crack it open, whatever helps you to understand.
Grab the record over at BandCamp. After all, it”s meant to be shared, adored, hated, praised, bashed and loved.