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Sound Check

September 6, 2012
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By Chad Taylor

Cat Power



Cat Power continues to swing for the heights previously attained by 2006’s “The Greatest.” “Sun” continues that trek, and while it doesn’t quite reach the summit, the album is a worthwhile journey of its own. Power’s voice is as sultry and evocative as ever, but with “Sun” the instrumentals are put on display in a more conspicuous way than her previous efforts. Tracks like “Manhattan,” “3,6,9” and — perhaps most notably — the title track are examples of Power stretching her legs a bit and exploring just what kind of emotion she can convey through instrumentation. As Power’s confidence as a performer grows, so too does her willingness to explore the limits of her own capabilities. “Sun” may not be Power’s best album, but it’s certainly her most complete. CV

Viva Montesa

‘Everyone’s Got Something Good to Say’


Viva Montesa are excellent purveyors of good, loud, jangling rock. The pseudonymous Schwick Boys will draw obvious comparisons to other rock duos and will actually compare rather nicely. They’re bluesier than, say, the White Stripes, but they share that band’s penchant for fuzzy amps cranked to 11. With their first full-length studio effort, the major concern was whether Viva Montesa could capture the Sturm und Drang of their live shows. Thankfully, the only thing missing from the experience is a shot of Jack. The duo is at their loud, unbridled best on tracks like “Hey Lady” and “Gimme Moe,” and they channel their inner Johnny Rivers on “The Green Bullet.” There really isn’t a misfire anywhere on the album. CV

Viva Montesa’s CD release party is Saturday, Sept. 8 at Wooly’s. $5 cover, Austin Taft Soundtrack and Resurrection Mary also play.

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