Album Review: A Kiss Before You Go by Katzenjammer
Fairly Good, Based on 2 Critics
AllMusic - 60 Based on rating 6/10
It's quite appropriate that Norwegian four-piece girl group Katzenjammer are named after a comic strip popular in the early- to mid-20th century, as their highly eclectic sound feels both slightly cartoonish and unashamedly stuck in a postwar cabaret time warp. Their second album, A Kiss Before You Go, continues where 2008 debut Le Pop left off, blending their impressive multi-instrumental skills with an array of old-school sounds, from the gentle melancholic waltz of "Lady Marlene," to the sinister vaudeville of "Soviet Trumpeter," to the ukulele-led doo wop of "Cherry Pie. " Their kitsch punk tendencies occasionally come to the forefront, as on the theatrical Adam Ant-esque "Loathsome M" and the yelping pirate-like ditty "Gypsy Flee" (featuring a cameo from Dweezil Zappa), but while their sense of fun is infectious, it's the less chaotic moments that prove there's more to them than the "look at us, aren't we wacky" exterior.
An album that shape-shifts and surprises with a graceful, effortless ease. Mischa Pearlman 2012 The set-up for Katzenjammer is this: they’re an all-girl four-piece from Norway who met at music school in 2005 and who play (and swap) some 15 instruments between them, including a giant balalaika – a three-stringed, triangle-shaped Russian instrument that can be as tall as a man. It’s no surprise, then, that their second album – the bittersweetly-titled A Kiss Before You Go – is awash with musical moments that are equally idiosyncratic and eclectic.