Rachael Yamagata’s Dramatic “Tightrope Walker”

The husky singer’s new album is an entertaining romp.


Rachael Yamagata
Tightrope Walker
Frankenfish Records/Thirty Tigers

Courtesy of Frankenfish Records/Thirsty Tigers

With her husky, commanding voice, Rachael Yamagata could have been a torchy lounge chanteuse in the pre-rock’n’roll ’50s or a bluesy soul shouter in the late ’60s. On this fine fourth album, she throws subtlety to the winds and sounds like she’s having the time of her life, romping through a set of dramatic pop tunes designed for maximum entertainment. Highlights include “Nobody,” a scorching floor-shaker soaked in obsessive desire, the seductive earthy folk of “Easy Target,” and the rousing anthem “Money Fame Thunder,” which closes the album on an uplifting note. Yamagata’s savvy, efficiently constructed songs are commercial in the best possible sense, catchy and engaging, but consistently smart to boot. Enjoy!

Fact:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn’t fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation so we can keep on doing the type of journalism that 2018 demands.

Donate Now
  • Jon Young is a contributing writer for Mother Jones. For more of his stories, click here.