Neko Case has always been brave, but with her latest album she proves herself fearless. With her forthcoming Anti- release, The Worse Things Get, the Harder I Fight, the Harder I Fight, the More I Love You, the singer known as much for her restless musical curiosity as her clarion voice charts a powerfully personal course across the rocky landscape of childhood, love, and loss.
Case’s 2009 album, “Middle Cyclone,” was her most ambitious to date, vaulting her to new heights of critical and commercial success and netting two Grammy nominations. But if “Middle Cyclone”–laced with frogs, tornados, and killer whales–was Case’s exploration of the potency of the natural world, the new album sees Case turning inward. The Worse Things Get… plunges into the wilderness of human experience, revealing Case at her most emotionally raw and yet, paradoxically, in steely control.
Originally formed in 2006 as Dodobird by multi-instrumentalist Meric Long, unpredictable San Francisco indie-rock duo The Dodos acquired their new moniker with the arrival of Logan Kroeber, a fellow West Coast artist whose penchant for experimental drumming and progressive metal melded perfectly with Long’s interest in West African Ewe drumming and country blues fingerpicking.