No-one Listens To Albums In Full Anymore: U.S. Girls - In A Poem Unlimited
An homage to the art of the album. First to last, no skipping, no playlisting. The album in its purest form.
U.S. Girls - In A Poem Unlimited
The first song sets the tone. 'Velvet 4 Sale' is an unforgiving statement of revenge, channelled from the depths of years of pent up female anger. It starts with the lines "You've been sleeping with one eye open / Cos he always could come back, you know?" It ends with a chord that the ear wants to satisfy but which is mercilessly left hanging. As listeners we are officially put on notice. Pay attention; Meg Remy has something important to say.
Under the name U.S. Girls, Meg Remy has been releasing music since 2007 and from 2015, through Aldous Harding's label 4AD. In A Poem Unlimited is reflected in the tone of the #metoo movement, yet it feels more visceral. After the first track it elaborates on what might bring a woman to revenge, telling tales of appeasing male desires, physical and emotional abuse, and misuse of power.
The album builds as Remy speaks more directly to her listeners. She pivots and starts describing characters who look within themselves for answers ('Rosebud') and who break unhealthy relationships ('L-Over' - a lovely play on words). The album reaches its climax at 'Pearly Gates', a song laced in double entendres of sexual misconduct and abuse of power. From there, the tone eases with the meditative and frank 'Poem' and the warning of 'Time' which leaves you with something to think about.
The error would be for the listener to equate such weighty topics to a heavy, unlistenable album. Remy teamed up with Toronto funk and jazz collective Cosmic Groove and it shows. This music drives a danceable and catchy album, and you will want multiple listens. In fact you will need them, as the thematic layering on display reveals itself further the deeper you listen. You might even say it was unlimited.
Meg Remy answered our Flying Out Musical Questionnaire on our Instagram. See what she had to say here