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Marianne Faithfull - Easy Come Easy Go

Marianne Faithful, Easy Come, Easy Go

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 2 out of 5

EASY Come, Easy Go is – incredibly – the 22nd album from Marianne Faithfull, and is a collection of 18 cover versions featuring guest appearances by the likes of Keith Richards, Antony Hegarty, Rufus Wainwright, Jarvis Cocker and Nick Cave.

Released in three formats – a 10-song standard CD; a special luxury 18 song 2 CD edition; and a vinyl edition with the full 18 tracks – it’s a lengthy listen that ultimately disappoints.

All the songs have been chosen by Marianne and producer Hal Willner and range from Billie Holiday’s Solitude to The Crane Wife by current band, The Decemberists.

Other tracks are Sing Me Back Home by Merle Haggard, Children of Stone by Espers, the title track Easy Come, Easy Go Blues by Bessie Smith, Morrissey’s Dear God Please Help Me, Dolly Parton’s Down from Dover and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club’s Salvation.

Keith Richards appears on Sing Me Back Home; Antony Hegarty on Ooh Baby Baby and Jarvis Cocker on Sondheim’s Somewhere.

Other guest appearances on the album come from Rufus Wainwright who contributes vocals to Children Of Stone, while his aunt and mother Kate and Anna McGarrigle appear on The Flandycke Shore.

Warren Ellis plays his violin on three songs and Nick Cave lends some vocals to The Crane Wife. Sean Lennon and Teddy Thompson play guitar on a couple of the tracks and Cat Power harmonizes on Hold On, Hold On.

With such an incredible line-up, and such a diverse collection of songs, there are – almost inevitably – some highlights. Hold On Hold On is suitably rocky, The Phoenix is a breezy offering that lifts the tempo nicely, while Kimbie rates as another favourite thanks to its dusky simplicity.

But on the whole, this feels like a self-indulgent amble through Faithfull’s own personal favourites that puts the emphasis on jazzy cabaret, and downbeat and/or haunted delivery.

Songs like In Germany Before The War and Black Coffee irritate rather than inspire, and test the patience, particularly given the length of the double CD package.

Her take on Black Rebel Motorcycle’s Salvation, meanwhile, is likely to have fans of that band crying out in revolt.

You have to admire Faithfull’s durability and ambition, but given her status within the industry, and the talent she’s been able to amass for this collection of work, the results are both underwhelming and hugely disappointing.

Download picks: Hold On Hold On, O O Baby, Kimbie, Many A Mile

Track listing:
Disc 1:

  1. Down From Dover
  2. Hold On Hold On – feat. Chan Marshall & Sean Lennon
  3. Solitude
  4. The Crane Wife feat. Nick Cave
  5. Easy Come, Easy Go
  6. Children of Stone feat. Rufus Wainwright
  7. How Many Worlds feat. Teddy Thompson
  8. In Germany Before The War
  9. Ooh Baby Baby – Duet with Antony
  10. Sing Me Back Home Duet with Keith Richards

Disc 2:

  1. Salvation feat. Sean Lennon
    Black Coffee
  2. The Phoenix feat. Sean Lennon
  3. Dear God Please Help Me
  4. Kimbie
  5. Many A Mile To Freedom
  6. Somewhere (A Place For Us) Duet with Jarvis Cocker 4
  7. Flandyke Shore feat. Kate and Anna Mc Garrigle