Neko Case

Unlike other country & western stars, Pacific Northwest chanteuse Neko Case doesn't traffic in heartache, but comeuppance. "You get what you deserve," she sings atop twangy noir like a bruised yet not battered Nancy Sinatra-meets-Patsy Cline. Case, for her part, has no regrets as to what she gives, which, on The Tigers Have Spoken, is 35 minutes of insurgent vitality -- covers, interpretations, and two unreleased originals. Tigers features aching, reverb-laden selections written by Case and her equally sassy, self-actualized forebears such as Buffy Sainte-Marie, Loretta Lynn, and the Shangri-Las. Showing and earning her stripes, sultry Case has anointed her throaty, lonesome sound with sleek, fully realized grace that would make any tiger proud.

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