Devil in a Bunny Suit, Angel in a Cocktail Dress: Album review
I met Cameron Laing in a bar with red curtains and a tardy sound engineer. We talked about the devil. Before the hour was up we had discussed the conventions of love songs, men with antlers, mean landlords, sinking ships, windmills and rabbit masks, our distance from heaven….you know, the usual kind of things you talk about with a stranger in a bar with red curtains. Not coincidentally, many of these themes are included in Quixote’s debut album: Devil in a Bunny Suit, Angel in a Cocktail Dress.
True to the title, the album flirts with the grittiness of a rock and rock hell scape (The Big Bad Man, and Drive me naked), while simultaneously embarking on a smooth, ethereal pilgrimage into the realm of brushes, grand piano, and soaring vocals, as in the tracks, For all the Wolves and Empty Crates. Both lyrically and sonically, the album plays with the duality of light and darkness, and all the various gradients of darkness. At one point in Whiskey Fists, we are transported “forty thousand feet in the air,” and in another song, Belly, we are told of a man whose heart that has grown so heavy that not even the angels can lift him off the earth.
It’s no surprise that Quixote is hard to categorize. Quixote’s sound has the dramatic, trickster-like nature of Tom Waits, and the melancholy and vocal ease of Jeff Buckley…and then, just when you think you know where the song is going, they’ll surprise you.
One of the most beautiful tracks on the album is Empty Crates. The combination of Laing’s effortless voice and the slow trumpet line produces a kind of hymn that persists in the room, even when the song is over.
Review by Kasia Juno