If ever an album opened leaving you unnerved, it’s Poe’s Haunted. The opening call to her mother starts out tender, only to end eerily. After a five year hiatus, Poe is back, perhaps less angry, but no less enjoyable.
“Haunted” is glorious in its melodic triumph. “Control” doesn’t relent. Poe likes to tighten the reigns. “Terrible Thought” is a fine wine tinged with cyanide. You don’t know whether to sip or spit. Poe is at her best when there is nothing but her tender voice to enjoy. “5 Minute Hallway” starts out that way, but fills with each stanza, only to collapse gently and follow the cycle again. “Spanish Doll” is as tender and lovely.
Poe has a talent for this, I have no doubt. Whether the mainstream will feel the same, I can only guess. Her music always seems just too dark and smart for pop and too melodic for rock. Poe is in a place of her own and I have to admit I wouldn’t mind being there too.
+ charlie craine