Scout Niblett

The Calcination of (Drag City)

Just when you think indie rock's feral wild child can't get any more menacing or eerie, Scout Niblett proves you can get away with playing the game on your own dark, harrowing terms. With only a distorted guitar and sporadically thudding drums as companions in her "self-made sweatbox," this is not an album for the treadmill. Put this away beside Husband & Knife's An End, then play during times of quiet despair. Niblett's confessional wails are a good reminder that self-reflection is painful, but if you're firmly in control of the output, there's captivating art to be made. It's heavy shit, with only a few minor uptempo respites like "Kings," but Niblett and producer Steve Albini emotionally connect. A draining listen, but ultimately satisfying.

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