Soulful or Saccharine? Grace Askew at Stickyz | Rock Candy

Friday, January 6, 2012

Soulful or Saccharine? Grace Askew at Stickyz

Posted By on Fri, Jan 6, 2012 at 11:50 AM

Grace Askew at Stickyz

Last night bluesy, twangy Memphis songwriter Grace Askew, 24, played Stickyz, accompanied by Black Market Goods drummer Jesse Williams and an amazing lead guitarist whose name I never caught.

At her best, Askew is soulful, sexy and dark. In it's lower ranges, her voice is reminiscent of PJ Harvey's. She covers Tom Waits, manages the complicated fingering of Mississippi John Hurt and writes intimate story-songs. At her most annoying, she's nasally, performative, saccharine and affectedly twangy — an industry aspirant one Greyhound awhile from Nashville. These are the times that remind us, Askew came to gigging fairly young (age 17) seeking the attention and acceptance (she claims in interviews) that her high school classmates wouldn't provide.

Largely the show was enjoyable. Her songs' guitar parts are great (owing, I suspect, to the unnamed man on lead). They smack of blues, jazz and flamenco — I even heard a few surfy licks. Askew may be trying to channel a young Loretta Lynn, but I suspect she and her band are suburban kids operating under the influence of many Memphis in May String Cheese Incident viewings. Frequent instrumental breaks and the playfulness and competence of Mr. Unnamed screamed as much.

Askew's performance lacked the immediateness that draws me to live music and the edginess that sears a performance in my brain. I appreciate her capacity for different styles, but perhaps she would be better served deciding how she wants to present herself artistically and cohering her music and her image behind this decision. Maybe then she would seem a bit more authentic.

Mr. Unnamed on lead guitar at Stickyz

Tags: , , , ,

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Comments (10)

Showing 1-10 of 10

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-10 of 10

Add a comment

More by Cheree Franco

Readers also liked…

  • Judge anticipates punishment of lawyers in Fort Smith class action case

    Federal Judge P.K. Holmes of Fort Smith issued a 32-page ruling yesterday indicating he contemplates punishment of 16 lawyers who moved a class action lawsuit against an insurance company out of his court to a state court in Polk County after a settlement had been worked out.
    • Apr 15, 2016
  • John Goodson and others add lawyers for hearing on forum shopping

    Lawyers facing federal court sanctions for forum shopping a class action insurance case have brought in new legal guns from out of state to fight potential sanctions.
    • May 26, 2016
  • Lawyers plead for mercy in Fort Smith forum shopping case

    Twelve of the lawyers facing punishment by federal Judge P.K. Holmes in Fort Smith for moving a class action case against an insurance company out of his court to a state court where it was speedily settled have filed their argument against sanctions.
    • Jun 16, 2016

Most Shared

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation