Review Summary: I'm on your side when nobody is, cause nobody is.
Come sit right here and sleep while I slip poison in your ear
Oh, our little St. Vincent. With an innocent, frazzled look on the cover of Marry Me, she appears to be so sweet. Doe-eyed and vulnerable, yet so charming, how could you resist her? But then again….under every cover is a secret. With St. Vincent, or truly known as Annie Clark, she holds a bit more of a sinister side. But then again, who ever said catchy, likable songs had to be all sugar, spice, and everything nice? Marry Me, especially looking back from where she’s at now, with a sophomore album already, was a fantastic debut. No questions should be asked.
Instantly, she takes a stand against someone, singing “I'm not your mother's favorite dog/
I'm not the carpet you walk on”. Through this opening track, “Now, Now”, St. Vincent starts all sweet and innocently, working her way to frenzied guitar riffs and panic, ending with a bang. It’s back to sweet again though, with “Jesus Saves, I Spend”, with a choir in the background cheerily going “ba-ba-bum, ba-ba-bum”. At the same time, St. Vincent’s voice shows a hint of corruptness. It’s as if the background singers were trying to keep things optimistic, while she’s letting us enjoy her oh-so rebellious nature.
She takes over the choir, as if it were a battle between the brains with songs such as “Your Lips Are Red” with sinister, evil words such as “This cities black from all the ashes in downtown/Ashes in downtown, ashes in downtown”, then following up with songs such as “Marry Me”, that’s a bittersweet, slightly obsessive love song.
The real magnum opus and brilliant show of Clark’s seething with evil side is “Paris is Burning”. You see the streets of Paris burning, with ash thrown into the air. You feel the panic as the citizens flee, while the destroyers throw themselves into a waltz, dancing in joy. With a variety of instruments, St. Vincent is able to convey this feeling of joy of the destroyers (with dread on the part of the citizens as well) very well. She destroys the nice side, letting evil wreak havoc in the streets unadulterated. And what a feeling it is.
Her good side returns though, and with vengeance to kill the bad. Between the elegant, classy “All My Stars Are Aligned”, as well as “We Put A Pearl In The Ground”, with the hectic, yet contained (and brilliant with its chorus) “Apocalypse Song”, each shows the best of St. Vincent, be it evil or saintly.
But then the two sides really start to merge, with it being good at times (“Landmines”), and sub-par at times (with lyrics such as “Little lamb, what's your plan? Greener pastures in the sky?” Just….no, Annie, no.)
By the end, St. Vincent has created a wonderfully enjoyable album, letting us enjoy our both of our sides, evil and kind, being appeased. She uses both sides of herself to her advantage, and she knows this, as she says this at the end of the album.
"Have I fooled you, dear?
The time is coming near when I'll give you my hand and I'll say,
"It's been grand, but... I'm out of here
I'm out of here"”