It's almost easy to draw comparisons between the artist Cat Power and the felines that arguably inspired her name, especially now that she's released "Sun," her first album or original material in six years.
Like the independent felines from which she took her stage name, the artist whose given name is Charlyn Marshall is self-sufficient on this album. Consider how she took compete control of writing, playing, recording and producing "Sun" by herself.
" 'Moon Pix' was about extreme isolation and survival in the crazy struggle," Power said of her 1998 album in a press release. " 'Sun' is don't look back, pick up and go confidently into your own future to personal power and fulfillment."
Little wonder that Power calls the album "a rebirth." It certainly seems this is in keeping with her trajectory the past year or so, which saw her long-term relationship with actor Giovanni Ribisi end.
|Date: 7 p.m. Monday|
|Venue: 9:30 Club, 815 V St. NW|
|Info: Sold out, but tickets may still be available through online resellers; 202-265-0930; 930.com|
Although Power's press statements call "Sun" her most personal album to date, that's become something of a hackneyed, nondescrip expression. Perhaps it's more accurate to say the new tunes, which slip easily into Power's indie rock catalog, are her most confident, moving from her classic rock to anthems to her own brand of electronica. There's even a guest appearance by Iggy Pop on the 10-minute-long "Nothin' But Time."
Certainly Power languishes in some darker moods on these new songs, but the tracks are more calls to action than laments. That's clear on "Peace and Love," which draws in all types of influences, including Black Flag, and includes lyrics such as "I'm a lover but I'm in it to win."
For all the critical excitement around "Sun," Power has opted not to do press, instead letting her music do the talking for her.
And that's not a bad idea considering she appears to be in her own powerful place.
Consider that when Power had a romance end -- when she and a model split up about 2006 -- she went through a breakdown and spent several days in what Rolling Stone called a mental and substance abuse ward in a Miami hospital.
Looking back at the road Power has traveled to get to this musical place of empowerment, it seems the "Sun" is the perfect tonic for this Cat's expression -- and health.