Hold the Valium - crazed lady pens eccentric pop masterpiece…
It’s a nervous breakdown you can dance to. See, most ‘kooky’ songstrels would wait until after the cold sweats and psychotic episodes had worn off before they hit the studio – but quirky-something Mate Of The Strokes Regina Spektor, like a bipolar Polly Harvey, sings herself through her life’s emotional maelstroms, using her alternative personalities as backing vocalists and her straitjacket buckles as percussion.
Her sublime album ‘Soviet Kitsch’ is by turns wistful, furious, tortured, playful, devastated, pissed as a squaddie and engaged in a hilarious impression of Fozzie Bear from The Muppets, but it’s the violent mood swings of ‘Your Honor’ that have you reaching for the tongue restraints and the Care In The Community emergency beeper faster than you can say, “Have you taken your medication today?”
“I kissed your lips and I tasted blood/DA-NA-NA-NA-DA-NA-NA-NA-NA!!!!” goes Bonkeroono Regina, gurgling like a toddler with Tourette’s having a tantrum at a White Stripes gig as she tells of her partner coming home beaten to a bloody pulp while fighting for her honour, and then demanding a comfort shag. Then Tori Amos Regina leaps out of her lower cortex, twinkling sweetly at a piano and cooing, “Gargle with peroxide/A steak for your eye/But I’m a pizzaterian so it’s a frozen pizza pie”. At which point the nurses arrive with the screens. Delectably mental.