Liz Janes Done Gone Fire

From the first smoky notes she breathes, Liz Janes gently alerts you to her arrival. The ensuing 40 minutes dance slowly through a dizzying landscape, mapped with precision by Janes and collaborator Sufjan Stevens (known for work with the Danielson Famile). In fact, much of the pleasure of Done Gone Fire lies in their careful cartography; Stevens’ instrumentation is nothing less than inspired, gliding from rumbling pianos and slide whistles to sweet waltzing banjos. Janes borrows from blues spirituals and country with equal dexterity, clearly inspired by roots music but refusing to settle comfortably. She interrupts her punk-gospel vocal improvisations with the occasional crazy horse screech of guitar and then returns to crooning. Along the way, some glorious shifts in key and tempo occur: sweet detours that might not work if it weren’t for her confident phrasing and Stevens’ disciplined production. At one point, she growls wearily that she "done lost her fire,” a tribute to the Paxil generation’s lassitude that somehow sounds timeless. To listen late at night is to allow her to come and lazily wrap her voice around you, tuck you in and lull you to bliss. (Asthmatic Kitty)