The fortunate T.O. media types who attended the CD press party for Tanya Tagaq's new record Animism last week are still buzzing about it. Tagaq is a totally mesmerising performer whose work is best experienced live, but Animism does capture her fiery energy. Producer/multi-instrumentalist Jesse Zubot and drummer Jean Martin (an avant-garde hero) make huge musical and compositional contributions here, but the core is the force of nature throat-singing based voice of Tagaq. She is already creating a stir with an inspired cover of Pixies classic "Caribou", a fitting choice given her Inuk roots (she reportedly has great caribou recipes). The other material is original and avant-garde, exploring terrain way beyond the conventional lyric-based song form. Tagaq has worked with Bjork and Kronos Quartet and performed at Carnegie Hall. She is a unique talent, in the very best way. Look for this at Polaris time.
Tagaq performs on a bill with Buffy Sainte-Marie at Luminato in Toronto (June 10).