by Jonathan Berger
Ma’am of Action
Somebody once told me that time keeps on slipping into the future, and this applies to AntiFolk artist Phoebe Kreutz as much as anyone else. Princess of the playful tune, Kreutz, historically a laugh-a-minute kind of artist, is now in a more thoughtful sort of mood. On her third EP and seventh record, Ma’am of Action, the listener will find a more sedate, more mature Kreutz, delving into topics like aging, self-reflection, and birding through a pandemic.
The songs are still bright, and every one has jokes in them, though the album has less LOLs than usual—but perhaps that’s what maturity is about, striving for something deeper, more sophisticated. Kreutz sings steamily in the slinky “Good in Bed,” about a girl who is, well… the title kinda gives it away, I guess. But there’s a twist I won’t give up (you gotta get the album, after all). There’s still lots of humor, like I said. It’s adult—and not in a dirty way.
Probably the strongest song on the EP is “The Real Heroes,” most reminiscent of her older style (am I a Kreutzian traditionalist? Damn straight!), with straight up yucks and a universal theme running through it (“the real heroes are the ones who are bad at their jobs”). And, of course, on “Ma’am I Am,” our heroine faces the fate of being identified as a ma’am, where her youthful self-identity is compromised—nay, crumbles before commentary in a cafe. It’s a hard-knock life, indeed.
As always, any opportunity to hear Phoebe Kreutz is an excellent opportunity.
Josh Simpson photo.
Jonathan Berger wonders what you’ve been up to. He’s been writing a little at jonberger.com.