Stream: Neneh Cherry and the Thing
    • FRIDAY, APRIL 13, 2012

    • Posted by: Don Saas

    Neneh Cherry: a Swedish club sensation from the 1980s ("Buffalo Stance"). The Thing: A Norwegian avant-garde jazz group (not Ben Grimm). Suicide: synthpop and glam punk pioneers fromt the 1970s. None of these three parts seem like they should ever come together, but weirder things have happened this month. Neneh Cherry, with the help of the Thin,g have performed a cover of Suicide's "Dream Baby Dream" (which was recently a staple of Bruce Springsteen's touring) that wowed us in ways we would have guaranteed were impossible from an artist who hasn't made any big splashes in the last twenty years.

    "Dream Baby Dream" is a slow-burner that takes its sweet time to unfurl. It transports you a smoke filled jazz club with a gin and tonic and a fancy Cuban cigar in your hand (in a world where smoking isn't gross and it's easy to get ahold of Cuban cigars). Rather than the trip-hop that made Neneh Cherry famous in the first place (or any of the club beats that defined her career), her voice is used to ground the Things frenetic jazz. Horns slowly enter (along with a creeping percussion and twinkling xylophones) until the horns threaten to overtake the entire song at which point, Cherry's voice bursts through again to see the track home. It's a stunner.

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