By Chesney Hearst, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Canadian singer-songwriter Leslie Feist, known professionally simply as Feist (pronounced like “feisty” without the y), brings her blend of evocative lyrics and subtly quirky indie arrangements to Lapa’s Circo Voador stage on Wednesday, October 24, 2012.
Marking her first ever performance in Rio de Janeiro, the Circo Voador show promises to reward both loyal fans and those unfamiliar with her complete body of work. The atmosphere providing for a potentially more intimate experience between the audience and singer who has, in the past, voiced her dislike of large arenas.
With vocals that have been described as “a satin bag full of crushed mirrors” or “carved steam”, Feist is well known for her improvisations between and during songs. She often engages with the audience and has encouraged mass harmonious sing-a-alongs.
The South American shows are part of an ongoing world tour in support of her fourth full-length album, Metals whose release last year marked a return to the music scene following the singer’s extended hiatus.
“After seven years of touring I was totally depleted” says Feist explaining her time off, “Things weren’t slowing down so I drew a big thick line eight months in advance in the calendar, and after that I would stop completely. When I hit that wall it was a dead stop, and I collapsed with my suitcase next to me.”
Realizing after that time that she still “hadn’t learned how to be home” she added another year to the break. “I traveled around and spent time in France, visited Mexico and Egypt. I saw my family and friends, planted some vegetables in the garden … just lived a normal life.”
The rejuvenating and centering effects the time away caused can be heard throughout the twelve tracks that make up Metals. Recorded in a barn far off the beaten path in Big Sur, California, the album sounds move first through jagged rocks then gracefully ebb in contemplative acceptance before preceding to gently flow determinedly forward.
The tracks are more stripped down than those on her 2007 Grammy nominated release, The Reminder whose catchy single, “1234″ became a mainstream success.
“A metal can mean either the raw material, or what it can become after a long process,” says Feist when explaining the name of the album.” It can always be melted down and turned into something else.”
The unearthed and transformed sounds of Metals, which some had considered a gamble for the singer, proved to be a critical success. A panel of Canadian journalists and broadcasters awarded Feist and the album the 2012 Polaris Music Prize (an award annually honoring the best full length Canadian album) in September.
When asked about the value commercial success Fesit says, “The most important thing is to make albums that I’m proud of and can stand beside. Everything else is a very distant second.”
Set lists on the tour thus far have included a mixture of older Feist favorites like “Sea Lion Woman”, “My Moon My Man” and “1234″ with newer tracks including “How Come You Never Go There”, “Anti Pioneer” and “Cicadas and Gulls”. She has also reportedly at times performed a slower version of her single “Mushaboom” from the 2004 Let it Die album.
A Brazilian, Aline Pommer, who lives in Rio and is a fan, tells The Rio Times, “Feist has had a lot of success in Brazil since ‘Mushaboom’, that was her big entrance to Brazilian fans, and they will be crazy about this concert, it will be awesome.”
Where: Circo Voador – Rua dos Arcos, S/N, Lapa
When: October 24th, 9PM