Tanya Tagaq, Retribution (Six Shooter)
No question about it — this is Tagaq’s peak so far and easily her most solid and harmonious work with fiddler/producer Jesse Zubot — who’s a damned interesting performer himself (and like entirely too many Canadians, little-known down here). The beats keep moving everything forward with plenty variation.This is clearly the step beyond throat-singing that was promised many moons ago, but more important, Tagaq gets huge points for pure originality. No idea how influential she can possibly be, but in a time of so much timid/lavish rehash, this is the Art Spirits work. “Cold” does cast a withering eye on our shortened life and overheated deaths. But she was right to close with the cover of “Rape Me.” I had doubts, but Tagaq takes over the tune and makes its combination of isolation and defiance all her own. What a sensibility.