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Rabbit Fur Coat

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Audio CD, January 24, 2006
$41.01 $3.05

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Known and loved by many as the enchanting front-woman for LA's Rilo Kiley, Jenny's vocal and songwriting gifts have continued to blossom at a rapid rate since that band's first album in 2000. Jenny's hauntingly soulful voice, sometimes bursting with buoyant spirit and at other times plaintive and world wearied, is deep, sensual and beguiling. Intricate storytelling and evocative lyrics infuse these songs with a captivating vibrancy but may be knocked sideways by the musical alchemy at play as a result of folk, country, and Southern gospel influences. Team Love. 2006.

Channeling the evocative storytelling of Laura Nyro and the soulful sexiness of Dusty Springfield, singer/songwriter Jenny Lewis skips all contemporary studio gimmickry to proffer a near-perfect solo debut. The front-woman for indie darlings Rilo Kiley breaks away from the songwriting democracy she shares with that band's co-leader Blake Sennett (also of the Elected), drawing inspiration from the crackling vinyl albums of her youth. And from the opening notes of "Run Devil Run," an acapella gospel hymn sung with the Watson Twins, through the note-for-note cover of the Traveling Wilbury's "Handle With Care" (with Bright Eyes' Conor Oberst and Death Cab For Cutie's Ben Gibbard), Lewis verifies this is her record. Her goose-bump voice can be as mournful as it is optimistic, but remains perpetually mesmerizing on Rabbit Fur Coat's best songs: the god-fearing country-rocker "The Charging Sky," the radio-poppy "You Are What You Love" and, especially, the title track, a haunting, solo-guitar waltz of poor meets rich. --Scott Holter

1. Run Devil Run - (with Jenny Lewis)
2. Big Guns, The - (with Jenny Lewis)
3. Rise Up With Fists!!! - (with Jenny Lewis)
4. Happy - (with Jenny Lewis)
5. Charging Sky, The - (with Jenny Lewis)
6. Melt Your Heart - (with Jenny Lewis)
7. You Are What You Love - (with Jenny Lewis)
8. Rabbit Fur Coat - (with Jenny Lewis)
9. Handle With Care - (with Jenny Lewis)
10. Born Secular - (with Jenny Lewis)
11. It Wasn't Me - (with Jenny Lewis)
12. Happy (Reprise) - (with Jenny Lewis)

Product Details

  • Audio CD (January 24, 2006)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Team Love Records
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (87 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #20,218 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

52 of 57 people found the following review helpful By W. Davidson on February 16, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Jenny Lewis from the Los Angeles quartet Rilo Kiley has stepped out on her own with a collection of country-folk enchantment that is sure to win her a legion of fans. Accompanying her on this journey are the enigmatic Watson Twins (Chandra & Leigh) who embellish Lewis's clear-as-crystal vocals with their gorgeous harmonies that are best described as `other-worldly'. Lewis also draws on a stable of indie stars from Death Cab For Cutie's Ben Gibbard and Maroon 5's James Valentine.

Rabbit Fur Coat sports a magnificent sleeve photograph that serves as a perfect visual insight to the classy affair within. Modelled on `white soul classics', in particular the stunning Laura Nyro/Labelle collaboration Gonna Take A Miracle (1972) this lofty goal is skilfully achieved with tracks such as the luminous Rise Up With Fists!!, The Changing Sky and Melt Your Heart.

The pace is smooth, the songs sound spectacular, dare I say magical, and the album is only briefly brought down by the somewhat stilted title track mid-way through. Much has been made of the cover of The Travelling Wilbury's Handle With Care, but this for me this is one of the weak points on the album. Although a good choice of song the unnecessary introduction of male vocalists somehow taints the otherwise pure female vision of this album. The disappointment is short-lived though as more aces reside in Lewis's scalloped sleeve with the majestic Born Secular that again takes this record into orbit.

Sporting all the requisite country musical touches - steel and acoustic guitars, wire drums and electric piano, Lewis's collection of country/folk/gospel songs make this an effortlessly enjoyable record, although a small leaning to country music is probably necessary.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By L. Sanchez on February 17, 2007
Format: Audio CD
I really like Rilo Kiley so I was interested to listen to this Jenny Lewis solo effort. But being a fan of Rilo Kiley definitely won't guarantee that you'll enjoy this album.

It's a lot more twangy and folksy than Rilo Kiley which appeals more to the college radio crowd but I must admit that I play this record more often than "More Adventurous" which is an album I adore; "Rabbit Fur Coat" just strikes me as being more original and better realized.

Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins have managed to record one of the most memorable albums of 2006. I'm not alone in this assessment. NPR did a list of the best albums of '06 and this, not surprisingly, was on it.
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30 of 38 people found the following review helpful By R. M. Ettinger VINE VOICE on April 19, 2006
Format: Audio CD
I admit I'm probably not young and/or hip enough to know Rilo Kiley - so this is my first exposure to Jenny Lewis, let alone the Watson Twins.

Going from that statement - this review will make almost no sense. It won't be logical, just based on pure gut. My first thoughts were that Lewis comes across as a non-twangy Loretta Lynn. It is music on her terms. She is a non-traditional songwriter - almost a deconstruction take on the process. Her performances take on the same form. It's not country. It's not folk. It's just......Lewis.

One of my initial thoughts was that this was like the first time I heard k.d. lang or Dwight Yoakam initial releases. I am *not* saying Jenny Lewis is like either in style or sound. She's just one of those performers where the mold either doesn't fit or has been broken. Either way - it's a *good* thing.

I won't review songs per se - but "Rise Up With Fists!!!" and "You Are What You Are" are stand-out cuts. A cover of the Traveling Wilbury's "Handle w/Care" is ok, but nothing more than that.

The Watson Twins really do add some nice backing vocals - and video-wise, they are extremely intriguing. I know - that latter part isn't enough to make a good CD, but for the curious - it's a worthy purchase.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Michael Morales on December 23, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
It's obvious that a great deal of love and devotion went into the making of Rabbit Fur Coat. From the iconic cover picture with Jenny and the Watson Twins echoing one of the scarier scenes from The Shining to the incredibly beautiful photos in the liner notes which show Jenny at her most beautiful and vulnerable.

And then there is the music. A perfect balance of melody, harmony and lyric writing that stands as the best work of Jenny Lewis' life and one of the best albums of the decade.

After the vocal workout of Run Devil Run things really get moving with The Big Gun which truly shows off Jenny Lewis vocal prowress. Hearing the Watson twins harmonize behind her makes you feel that these 3 women have been singing together their entire lifes. It's not true of course but the chemistry that they have is magical.

Rise Up With Fists is one of Jenny Lewis' greatest songs. It combines everthing I love about her. Her perfect voice beautiful at both the upper and lower registers of her range. The sense of humor and sarcasm and honesty of her songwriting. When she and the Watson's sing It was not pretty but she was...(not your wife) it always makes me chuckle..such a perfect lyric.

Happy is the first of two absolutely gorgeous ballads that grace this album. The way her crystal clear voice melts into the soft accoustic strumming and the ever so subtle electric guitar feedback is magical. This is truly an unforgettable performance. One of the loveliest songs I've ever heard.

Melt Your Heart is the second classic ballad from this album. Like alot of her songs it is melancholy and hopeful at the same time. I've spent many a night in the dark laying down listening to this song.

The rest of the album is equally strong.
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