September 23, 2010

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Lucy Schwartz, Life in Letters
Nettwerk Records, Sept. 28
“When there’s no more room in hell, the dead will walk the earth.” Right, but what about when there’s no more room in the public consciousness for lazy-rainy-day acoustic-guitar-driven alt-rock tunes sung by yet another plain-Jane echo-boomer chick? From now on, shouldn’t each new fame-craving crayon-drawing dweebette in this country be assigned a bunk in a (flower-gardened) gulag in some quaint crunchy-granola burg somewhere, to live out her celibate days watching Zooey Deschanel coverage on E! and staring at moths? I mean there’s nothing wrong with this 20-year-old racking up a film-soundtrack resume most any hack in her native L.A. would kill for (the love theme from Shrek Forever After, cameo backgrounding on basically everything, a bouquet of industry awards), and even at such a young age (unless someone’s lying to us, blink blink, like with Taylor Swift’s platoon of ghost-songwriters, blink blink twitch) she can imitate Carole King circa 1974 (the slow-piano-pounding “I Want the Sky”). But really, Submarines, Kate Havnevik, Feist and all their dinner-plate-eyed sisters have left no more room in hell for this. Get back into your unicorn-wallpapered room, Lucy Schwartz, and Google “sampling” — Portishead could use the company. B- — Eric W. Saeger