Boomkat Product Review:
Indie rock pin-up and Rilo Kiley frontperson Jenny Lewis makes a most welcome return to her solo work, which has clearly moved on in leaps and bounds since the rose-tinted country and western of Rabbit Fur Coat, which although a triumph in itself, never quite reached the creative heights found on this full-length. Acid Tongue is a far more delicate and sophisticated affair with Lewis' voice in brilliant form, morphing from the elegant frailty of 'Pretty Bird' to the full-throated attitude of 'Jack Killed Mom' with all shades in between. Further adding to the sense of depth and variation, Lewis is joined by a host of her celeb pals. We already know about Elvis Costello's turn on early single 'Carpetbaggers', but a quick flick through this record and you'll notice She & Him's Zooey Deschanel & M. Ward making contributions, plus Lewis' singer-songwriter boyfriend Jonathan Rice, Black Crowe Chris Robinson and even a number of members of her family all getting in on the act. At its best Acid Tongue delivers cuts like 'Tryin' My Best', a string-laden ballad that's fiery and rough around the edges, never allowing itself to sound too saccharin for its own good, but keeping in touch with her more rock-oriented roots there's fine work put in on the multi-sectioned nine-minuter 'The Next Messiah' and the incendiary Nashville rocker 'See Fernando', both of which bring balance to the sweetly intoned slow jams Lewis clearly excels at. Acid Tongue is almost certainly the best record Lewis has been involved with to date and goes someway towards justifying the excessive coverage she receives out there in the blogoshpere.