Best Of 2013, Guest Editors: Basia Bulat On Patti Smith’s “Just Kids”

As 2013 has come to an end, we are taking a look back at some of our favorite posts of the year by our guest editors.

BasiaBulatLogoThe reaction to Tall Tall Shadow (Secret City), Basia Bulat’s third full-length, has been exceedingly positive, a happy circumstance for a performer who made her thus-far moderate fame on the folk singer/songwriter circuit and is now looking to switch things up. Bulat’s first two albums, adept enough affairs, traded mostly in the light arrangements and soft dynamics of contemporary folk music. If her talents extend beyond many of her peers (notably her staggering facility on a wide range of stringed instruments from the dulcimer to the charango), her aesthetic palette as presented on her first two albums was largely traditional. Tall Tall Shadow, by contrast, opens with the stomping, gradual crescendo of the title track, an immediate announcement of increasing speed and volume that sustains for the rest of the record. It’s a sonic gamble for Bulat, who for the first time finds herself pushing her aesthetics into more energetic territory. Still, the song structures and modes are of a piece with her previous releases, making Tall Tall Shadow a furtherance rather than a divergence from her previous work. Bulat will be guest editing all week. Read our new feature on her.


Bulat: I don’t think I’ve ever cried as hard reading a book as I did while reading the final chapters of Just Kids. I don’t even know what else I could say about this book except that I loved it so.

Video after the jump.