Music » Critics' Picks

Nina Nastasia

8:30 p.m. Saturday, February 9. The Bluebird, 2706 Olive Street.

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At times Nina Nastasia comes on like the female Nick Drake; at other times, she resembles an introverted Feist; but most often, the New York singer-songwriter feels like a bracing antidote to freak-folk insecurities masquerading as pretensions. Though her sound is gossamer, her vision is striking and secure. Since her 2000 debut Dogs, Nastasia has evoked rural gothic guilt trips (2002's The Blackened Air) and ultra-minimal lyricism (2003's Run to Ruin, 2006's On Leaving), while always favoring the pre-Edison sounds of acoustic guitar, cello and piano. Last year's criminally overlooked (this critic is guilty as charged) You Follow Me paired her thread-worn voice with the scattershot drums of longtime pal Jim White for a song-cycle of love and languor that unfolds like a fan of razors in the dark.

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