Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Tarnation- Gentle Creatures (1995) MP3 & FLAC

"Where the gentle creatures roam, that is the place I call my home. You know I'll miss you when I'm gone, but I must be moving on."

Back in the mid-90s, a time when Alt. Country was not yet considered an anachronism and Indie chanteuse Neko Case was playing drums in a Punk band while going to art school, there was a band called Tarnation fronted by another ex-Punk drummer with a big country voice: Paula Frazer. Even more so than Case, Frazer is a torch singer, saturating every syllable with as much darkness and yearning as she can muster. The obvious touchstone here is Patsy Cline, and while Cline's iconic status is well-deserved, Frazer has a voice even Cline might have envied. Gentle Creatures is not for those who like their Alt. Country reverential (meaning traditional); this album was released on 4AD after all. You'll find no gentle acoustic ballads and sentimental odes to simpler times here; rather, Frazer's Gothic imagery and smoldering vocals coupled with spaghetti-western guitars and atmospheric production all coalesce into something truly "Alt." A forgotten classic by any standards.

Gentle Creatures (Original Issue)
 1. Game of Broken Hearts  (3:01)
 2. Halfway to Madness  (4:39)
 3. The Well  (6:08)
 4. Big O Motel  (6:02)
 5. Tell Me It's Not So  (2:24)
 6. Two Wrongs Won't Make Things Right  (4:11)
 7. Lonely Lights  (2:02)
 8. Gentle Creatures  (1:37)
 9. Listen to the Wind  (3:37)
10. The Hand  (2:40)
11. Do You Fancy Me?  (2:37)
12. Yellow Birds  (3:49)
13. Burn Again  (2:41)
14. Stranger in the Mirror  (3:58)
15. It's Not Easy  (3:35)


  1. Okay I had to go YouTube because, you know, I had to make sure I would like this cd. WOW she is great. Thanks! I know this is getting old but I look forward to the next surprise.

  2. There's another album, Mirador, and a live bootleg, both of which I have in FLAC. I'll post those in the near future. Frazer also has a number of solo albums, but I don't think they stack up to the first two Tarnation LPs

  3. There was a movie that came out a few years ago you might be interested in, it's named in homage of the band. 4AD's a great label, glad I have a chance to listen in


  4. Thanks David- I didn't know about the movie; I'll check that out

  5. man, i'd forgotten how good this album was. she rocks. i'm also in love with her album of solo demos - they are so lovely and haunting.

  6. Hi k, I haven't heard the solo-demo album; I'll check that out, thanks!

  7. Thank you !
    I've got their two albums but this one is my favorite.
    Please can you post the live bootleg ?
    Where does it come from ?


  8. Hi, Chris, as it turns out, it isn't a bootleg; it's a 7 track promo French-only release called "Tarnation Live" issued by 4AD dating from the time of "Gentle Creatures." I will post it soon: http://www.discogs.com/Tarnation-Live/release/1989967

  9. ''Gentle Creatures''!Another 1 of my favorite albums.
    Thank you for FLAC.

  10. sunday, my pleasure. It's a wonderful album. I can never get too much of Paula Frazer


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