Rasputina Frustration Plantation

The press release screams "The new CD from the creators of Cello Rock!!” and although it is highly dubious that Rasputina were the first to put catgut to string in the accompaniment of guitars, it accurately describes two parts of this album: there are cellos involved, and it does rock on occasion. This release is also a highly specific concept album, since certain vignettes and subject matter deal with rural Louisiana circa 1804, which brings to mind the question why not 1808 or 1813? Not dramatic enough? Get rid of all that Louisiana crap, personified in the horrible spoken-word track "My Captivity By Savages,” and there are some cool, crunchy rock numbers here in the vein of PJ Harvey. "Possum of the Grotto” has such an attack on those cellos it’s a surprise they didn’t fall apart and "High on Life” flies with anger and rousing choruses. The highlight here, "The Mayor,” chugs with echoed, haunting vocals and those famous cellos used to great effect and a psych-rock vibe. Even the ridiculous "Saline the Salt Queen” has some great choruses and guitars to distract one away from the utter inanity of the lyrics. If one has no patience for any kind of artistic overindulgence, then beware, for lace dresses and flowery language are quite prevalent, but sometimes those dresses are left in that soggy Louisiana swamp and some good, bad fun is had. (Instinct)