Cate Le Bon – In Session for Marc Riley – BBC 6 Music – May 21, 2019 – BBC 6 Music –
Cate Le Bon, heading into the weekend and wrapping up August – In session for Marc Riley at BBC 6 Music and recorded on May 21, 2019.
Cate Le Bon first gained public attention when she supported Gruff Rhys (of the Super Furry Animals) on his 2007 solo UK tour. She appeared as a guest vocalist on Neon Neon’s 2008 single “I Lust U” from their album Stainless Style. Under her original name she provided backing vocals on Richard James’s debut solo album The Seven Sleepers Den in 2006. She also appeared on his second solo album, We Went Riding, from 2010.
Her first official release was a Welsh language EP, Edrych yn Llygaid Ceffyl Benthyg (“Looking in the Eyes of a Borrowed Horse”, similar to the English expression “to look a gift horse in the mouth”), on Peski Records in 2008. She also self-released the double A-side debut single “No One Can Drag Me Down” / “Disappear” (described by Gruff Rhys as “Bobbie Gentry and Nico fight over a Casio keyboard; melody wins!”) on her website. Le Bon worked alongside Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci’s Megan Childs, who contributed violin, and Super Furry Animals and Thrills collaborator John Thomas, who added pedal steel.
Her debut album, Me Oh My was released in 2009, followed by Cyrk and the Cyrk II EP in 2012.
In January 2013, Le Bon moved to Los Angeles to further her career in the US. Her third album, Mug Museum, was released November 2013. It was produced by Noah Georgeson and Josiah Steinbrick in Los Angeles, and featured Stephen Black (bass) and Huw Evans (guitar). She provided guest vocals on the track “Slow Train” from Kevin Morby’s debut album Harlem River.
Critic Laura Snapes described Le Bon as “a ringleader who’s prepared to stake out uncertain territory. Le Bon always keeps you guessing, making the old traditions of guitar-oriented rock feel arbitrary, too. Her nervy assessments of the world are filled with equal parts suspense and heart, and beautifully zany riffs, where the feeling of being frayed by uncertainty comes together into a strangely comforting patchwork.” In an interview with Pitchfork, Jeff Tweedy of Wilco stated that Le Bon was “one of the best out there making music now.” Describing her sound, he said “it’s really rare for people to have a specific sound anymore, but I can always tell when it’s her playing guitar. Whenever I try to figure out her guitar parts, they’re way harder than they sound.”
In case you aren’t familiar, by all means hit the Play Button and let your mind wander a bit.
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