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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Handle with care, precious contents
This is a lovely album and a very rare kind of new country, it's not po-faced or full of false sentiment but it has lots of flare and quirkiness. For me the best country music was made by people like Dolly Parton, Glen Campbell, Willie Nelson and Hank Williams snr. people who understood 3 important country ingredients melody, story and a bit of showbusiness. Jenny seems...
Published on 1 Aug 2006 by Chinosan

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10 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Flawed but impressive solo album
As the singer for Rilo Kiley, Jenny Lewis always brought a soulful croon to their indie-pop songs, so it’s understandable that her first solo album has some heavy influence from rootsier genres like soul, country and blues. As you’d expect, on the surface it’s lovely stuff, Lewis’ velvety voice floating gently over M. Ward’s...
Published on 5 Feb 2006 by Mike Mantin


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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Handle with care, precious contents, 1 Aug 2006
By 
This review is from: Rabbit Fur Coat (Audio CD)
This is a lovely album and a very rare kind of new country, it's not po-faced or full of false sentiment but it has lots of flare and quirkiness. For me the best country music was made by people like Dolly Parton, Glen Campbell, Willie Nelson and Hank Williams snr. people who understood 3 important country ingredients melody, story and a bit of showbusiness. Jenny seems to understand all of these and mixes it with a classic girl group attitude, think Shangri-las, think Ronettes, think the girls in the B52s. Big Guns, the first full song proper, shows she's got both pop and country in her soul. She delivers songs with heart but also with a twinkle in her eye and never gets too precious. Her cover of the Travelling Wilburies isn't as great as the original but it sure is a lot of fun. After that she sticks in a classic twisted story song, the title track, Rabbit Fur Coat.

This is a country record that will make some purists sniffy but will entertain anyone looking for good songs, good singing and some fun.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great stuff, 23 Feb 2006
By 
J. W. Bassett (Kent, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Rabbit Fur Coat (Audio CD)
Taking time out from her band, Rilo Kiley, Jenny Lewis shuffles out of the indie-darling spotlight and into the softer shade of a Memphis back porch for the release of her debut solo album, Rabbit Fur Coat.
The disc’s dozen tracks were in gestation for two years, with songs written in the Rilo Kiley tour van, rehearsed around sound-checks, and finally recorded in 2005 in the San Fernando Valley and Portland, Oregan. Ostensibly a solo affair, Lewis gives equal billing to Kentucky-born twins Chandra and Leigh Watson, but while their cooing southern belle harmonies add a sprinkling of charm, it’s Lewis’ own confessional poetry that’s the album’s focus.
Right from the gorgeous, haunting accapella of opening track, Run Devil Run, you know you’re in for a treat. It’s well known that Lewis has a most wonderful voice, but she excels herself here with a song of almost immeasurable beauty. Elsewhere, Lewis runs along the bumpy road of inter-band relationships on You Are What You Love and Melt Your Heart, and adopts a near perfect Lucinda Williams’ drawl on Rise Up With Fists!!, before unleashing the full-on gospel of Born Secular.
At the centre of the album lies the title track, which has Lewis completely alone with her acoustic guitar, telling the true story of her absent mother and her rabbit fur coat. The tone of Lewis’ voice makes the mood hard to pin down; it’s not one of happiness, but nor is it one of sadness, rather a weary acceptance of her mother’s peculiar obsession with her coat. Rabbit Fur Coat is immediately followed by a sparkling cover of the Traveling Wilburys’ Handle With Care. While Lewis handles George Harrison’s lines, she invites M Ward, Conor Oberst and Death Cab For Cutie’s Ben Gibbard to share the vocals on the ever-convincing tale of the perils of stardom.
Lewis has tapped into a fifty-year-old Americana and found that moment at the birth of rock ‘n’ roll where folk, country, gospel and vocal pop all fused together. Acoustic guitars tumble their melodies over brushed snares with an occasional slide guitar brought to the fore, and Lewis achieves all this without the album ever sounding dated. Such is the alchemy of greatness.
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35 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spinning Jenny - Cotton on everyone. Quickly!, 17 Jan 2006
By 
This review is from: Rabbit Fur Coat (Audio CD)
Anyone of these tracks, with the possible exception of Handle Me With Care (good cover version though it is), could have featured on the last Rilo Kiley album More Adventurous. They are all that good individually. However they work even better collectively and this is definitely a case of the value of the whole being greater than the sum of the parts.
Many of the songs have been showcased by Jenny live before and a copy of her performance of some of them at The Echo (wherever that is!) has been available on the internet for quite a while. But they really come to life with the help of a bit of decent production and great harmonies provided by the Watson Twins. Not that she needs a lot of studio enhancement; her voice has always been that good. Like Natalie Merchant with knobs on.
Stand out tracks for me are 'The Big Guns' (stomping Country music that makes you want to slap your knees as the music swells), 'You Are What You Love' (simple but brilliant lyric 'you are what you love, not what loves you back'), 'Melt Your Heart' (all breathy sensual vocals) and the wonderful 'Born Secular' (could have been on 'Take Offs and Landings' with its simple drum machine backing) in which Jenny returns to a pet theme of religion and questions her lot in life.
Just one question, what's happened to the brilliant 'Somebody Else's Clothes'? Always thought this was a solo song. I know it's been properly recorded and it's too good to leave off this album or throw away as a B-side. Maybe a hidden track at the end? Please...
Jenny Lewis may actually be a bona fide musical genius but I have a horrible feeling the world is never going to cotton on. Cotton on everybody!
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars amazing album, so please I've discovered jenny!, 31 Jan 2006
By 
This review is from: Rabbit Fur Coat (Audio CD)
I must admit to being a latecomer to the talents of Jenny Lewis. I have heard lots about Rilo Kiley but haven't got any of their albums (all about to change). This is truly an outstanding album. Jenny's voice is achingly beautiful at times yet biting at others when necessary.
The harmonies from the Watson Twins really help give the album the white-soul feel Jenny appears to have aimed for. Yes it's a bit country, a bit folk but basically just a very classic sound. The songs are brilliant. I see what people mean they say Jenny is a lyrical genius. I love all the references to Laurel Canyon and San Fernando which go hand in the hand with the artwork, especially the early 70s style pic of Jenny barefoot in an American supermarket.
There is not a duff track here and the album really is addictive. I've bought lots of CD in the past few weeks but am ignoring them all in favour of this.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb collection, 30 Jan 2006
This review is from: Rabbit Fur Coat (Audio CD)
Rilo Kiley has always been more than just about Jenny Lewis, but when you hear this collection of songs you realise just how good a singer she is. A country/folk/gospel set of wry lyrics, crisply produced and well supported this is instantly likeable and then grows on you more. The cover of the Travelling Wilbury's 'Handle With Care' fits the mood but does nothing much better than the original. That aside this is a cracker of an album. Watch this space, Lewis is getting better with every release.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Memorable antidote to bubblegum pop, 15 Feb 2007
By 
James J. Marsh "Benny On Tour" (Coventry) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Rabbit Fur Coat (Audio CD)
This is a really beautiful album that defies description to an extent. I bought it because I'm a big Rilo Kiley fan and thought I'd see how Jenny Lewis' solo material compares. The answer is very favourably. The styles of the songs are varied but there is something there for everyone, all delivered with lewis' distinctive singing voice. This is a really hauntingly good album that will stay with you, it's definately not the kind of music you can hear and forget 10 minutes later. Great stuff.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow.....the best album Ive heard in ages!!!, 1 July 2007
By 
K. Allen - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Rabbit Fur Coat (Audio CD)
I love this album soooo much! Jenny Lewis's voice is truly amazing, she could sing anything, including addresses from the phone book, and it would sound fantastic. Add to the mix the Watson Twins voices and Im in heaven!

The songs themselves are sheer class, and the lyrics are witty, dry and very clever...

I recommend this album, you wont be disappointed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More please..., 24 Jan 2007
This review is from: Rabbit Fur Coat (Audio CD)
I bought this on a whim after spotting it one day. I was expecting something nice but not for something this great. Beautiful songs that showcase Jenny Lewis's songwriting talents. The Watson Twins vocals form the perfect harmony to her less than naive lyrics.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Top class, 23 Oct 2006
By 
Mr. Stephen Edwards "se1955" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Rabbit Fur Coat (Audio CD)
An absolutely brilliant album. Very strong lyrics - "Born Secular" is particularly intelligent and clever, and beautiful vocals. The style is probably at the folky end of alt-country, and you listen to this album for the songs and the singing, not for the playing.
The only weakish point is a so-what cover of the Travelling Wilburys formulaic "Handle with Care".
In my opinion, this is a step on from Jenny Lewis's Rilo Kiley work, and I hope it is the first of many such albums, preferably with the Watson Twins each time.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A conundrum..., 18 Feb 2013
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This review is from: Rabbit Fur Coat (Audio CD)
I hate Country (and Western) with avengence but I love this album. Does this mean that I'm really a C&W fan in denial or that this recording is good enough to overpower my prejudice?
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Rabbit Fur Coat
Rabbit Fur Coat by Jenny Lewis (Audio CD - 2007)
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