The Reminder by Feist

 

Critical reaction to Feist and her The Reminder effort from 2007 has always been mixed, and I have always regarded the scattered overly exuberant reviews of the release in the years since with reasonable suspicion. And indeed, when I did eventually get the time to lend the tracks a patient listen from start to finish, I too, have decided to fly a similar flag to the former category of reviewers’ and persist with a similarly shallow take on the album: that it does possess more than a couple of decent sounding pop-laced hits, but that is amidst a repertoire of largely forgettable tracks alongside.

 

TRACKLIST:
#1. So Sorry 3:12
#2. I Feel It All 3:39
#3. My Moon My Man 3:48
#4. The Park 4:34
#5. The Water 4:46
#6. Sealion 3:39
#7. Past in Present 2:54
#8. The Limit to Your Love 4:21
#9. 1234 3:03
#10. Brandy Alexander 3:36
#11. Intuition 4:36
#12. Honey Honey 3:27
#13. How My Heart Behaves 4:26

 

PERSONNEL:
Leslie Feist: Vocals, Guitar, Piano, Banjo, Drums

 

PRODUCER:
Gonzales
Feist
Renaud Letang
Mocky
Ben Mink

 

DATE OF RELEASE:
23rd April, 2007

 

SINGLES:
My Moon My Man
1234
I Feel It All
Honey Honey
Sea Lion

 

So credit where credit is due, and Feist does deserve them for the tracks that work. My Moon My Man is one of them; simple yet sizzling, it is a clear takeaway from the tracklist’s set of ‘louder’ tracks. The jazz influence abounds, and it has a crunchy bass line that you’d love to bounce to. 1234 is another, and most would place it as an accompaniment to the early generation iPod Nano commercials – which conveniently provided Feist an outlet to her talent and creativity.

 

Certain quieter numbers work out to the album’s diversity and advantage too. The Water comes across as a darker sonic experiment with threadbare vocals, and there should’ve been more of those sprinkled around the tracklisting in hindsight. Instead, we are presented with some not-so-great specimens such as a rather weak cover of Nina Simone’s Sea Lion Woman in Sea Lion at #6, which could have certainly done with more effort.

 

More critically, the production of the effort as a whole seems underpar, and while the quieter, more acoustic tracks can work on any pop album if done right, certain tracks come across as if they were merely recorded in Feist’s garden, featuring some vocals, strumming and a saxophone or bass joining in later on, but little else. A little more intricacy and attention to detail is always in order for the songs where the decibels are at the lower end; but that is Interscope’s problem and not Leslie Feist’s, who can yet comfortably rank herself as one of the better lyricists and songwriters of the contemporary indie era with this release.

 

 

 

 

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