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Love Circus

Lisa Germano Audio CD

Price: 9.47 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Operatic Psychodrama of Love 31 Mar 2001
By "waldglyde" - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
The second of Germano's brilliant song cycles, 'Excerpts From a Love Circus' is a moving, if disturbing, meditation on love and pain that is, by turns, Sylvia Plath and Sylvie Vartan. It is the tension between such polarities that makes Germano's music so haunting. A self-indulgent adolescent sense of teen-weltschmerz mixed with a brilliant gift for morbid tunefulness, mordant turns-of-phrase, and a voice that is one part wounded child, three parts arch-ironist. Just as no other contemporary artist combines the pop-form and confessional lyric quite as scathingly and - and this adds to her strength - wilfully selfindulgently, no one else manages her unnerving combination of gypsy rhythms, tacky pop, muted-thrash, and folk-tinged melodicism. Comparisons are unreliable, though useful, but for complexity of rhythms, and sheer herky-jerky dynamism in juxtaposing ideas, this is somewhere between the first Throwing Muses album and Lydia Lunch's Queen of Siam'. Vocally, the voice has enough wounded innocence to it to remind of Anita Lane, Nick Cave's ex, while, lyrically, the comparison to Plath is apposite. There is a strong degree of theatricalising of the self here, projecting a persona of pained, but bored, selfconsciousness, though enlivened by a nice line in self-deprecation.
My favourite aspect of this album, and of 'Geek the Girl' that preceded it, is the wilfull determination to turn what could have been quite catchy little commercial tunes into something perversely other. The wonderful 'Lovesick', and the charming, if nasty, 'I Love A Snot', are deliberately rescued from the threat of serious unit-shifting by alienating instrumentation and, in the case of the former, a wonderful middle-eight tribute to Yoko Ono. The loveliest song on the album is catchily titled 'We Suck' and extols the utter suckiness of true love. This album is perhaps not as disturbing as 'Geek the Girl', lacking the tape of domestic violence playing under a meditation on her own psychotic stalker, but, part-soap opera, part operatic psychodrama, it is still the perfect distillate of the society that produced, or poisoned, her.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All her albums deserve 5 stars 28 Nov 2000
By Rick Hellman - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
As a fan of Ms. Germano's for several years I decided to write a review of this album since reviews here were so scarce. While not my overall favorite album of hers, this one contains my favorite two songs (back to back no less) of hers to date. To say that her work is self-deprecating is an understatement. A self proclaimed alcoholic and repeat relationship failure Lisa is able to vocalize so much pain and suffering in the most candy coated way. Her music may drag a bit, but the melodies are so haunting and perfect. The two times I've seen her live were pure joy. She is so open and earnest, and while she may be nervous at each performance she gives, the audience she draws is more than forgiving. Listen to Singing to the Birds and Messages from Sophia, they are my faves.
"So what if your heroes changed their minds? And all you thought was right flew out the window? And all you based your life on wasn't real?" -Lisa Germano on Singing to the Birds
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars big, big heart...great big love...in the big big world 31 Jan 2005
By opentuned - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Germano's warmest, lightest, most musically ornate album, and a nice breather after the dark intensity of Geek The Girl. Not to say she isn't looking at things with any less of a sharp, brutally honest focus, but musically it is very rich and has a more diffuse, soothing feel. And where Geek dealt with the scars of adolescence, Circus seems to fuse a sense of childlike wonder to the more sober self-forgivings of that stage where we've somehow grown up. This has some of her finest songs ever, from the percussive "I Love A Snot" to the sparse "We Suck", and the indescribable deep-end dives into contradictions of "Baby On The Plane", "Messages From Sophia" and "Big Big World". It took a little longer to get into than some of her other albums, but I can't see myself ever being without this disc now.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everything else is boring boring 1 July 2005
By E. Kutinsky - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
It's hard to register artistic growth for someone who was as much of a sales blip as Lisa Germano was, but at the point she arrived at Excerpts From a Love Circus, fans could begin to notice an overwhelming growth in artistry. Her first two records - On The Way Down From the Moon Palace and Happiness - were interesting enough girl-hates-herself takes on the woman-hates-herself first two records of PJ Harvey - which is to say, less challenging. Then came Geek the Girl, a concept album of such intensity, it could be loved by only those willing to commit to it (which is recommended). Such an accomplishment is hard to top, but Excerpts finds strange territory for Germano - something like adulthood! In deadpan lyrics of "Coffee in the morning, and wine in the evening/ and everything else is boring boring" or "The world revolves around you, but it revolves around me too," Germano seems to wink at her wounded girl persona and stake out more interesting terrain. That climaxes in "Singing To The Birds" a song that finds the little girl of self-loathing really meaning a line of "It's kinda funny, when the rainfalls/ you could learn to love yourself." Such growth fits her well, without a doubt - the production and composition of each song is confident, and attended by a great revolving door of musicians, and her trademark fiddle is now a lovely accessory to her whimsical voice. The album closes on the great "Big Big World," a song that, in its tremulousness, admits its fear of her demons but seems to walk on anyway. Such an admission is the pinnacle of adulthood for our girl.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice, but a step down from Germano's previous two albums 8 April 2003
By woburnmusicfan - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Lisa Germano makes exactly the kind of music you would LEAST expect from John Mellencamp's former violinist: Moody (moody must be part of the job description for the 4AD label) and usually slow songs that discuss events in the life of a passive slacker waif. It's hard to believe Germano, who as always plays a variety of instruments, is the loser that she keeps singing about. This album is listenable throughout, and has some nice moments, but isn't in the same league with her last two albums, "Happiness" and "Geek the Girl." If you're new to Germano, go with one of those instead. The songwriting here isn't as consistent, and there's more self-indulgence, such as tracks of her cat yowling. The best song here is "I Love a Snot", about the boyfriend who makes her believe she's tubby and ugly. Also good are "Victoria's Secret" and "We Suck", which seems to be about her ex-boyfriend introducing his new girl.
(1=poor 2=mediocre 3=pretty good 4=very good 5=phenomenal)
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