Now that Rasputina has been in existence for nearly two decades, it’s obviously time to clean out the closet. Great American Gingerbread gathers up a brood of demos, compilation cuts and ephemera from as far back as 1997, though most of it comes from the early ‘aughts. Despite the different time periods from which the tracks come, there’s a consistency at work, as fulcrum Melora Creager‘s singular vision of cello-based avant pop remains in full effect. Whether it’s a story song like “Death at Disneyland” (from 2004), a lush neo-classical composition like “Children’s Reform Center” (also from ’04) or a short horror story like “Ballad of Lizzie Borden” (from 2007, though based on a libretto written when Creager was seven), it all brings the same visions of corsets and Neil Gaiman novels dancing in one’s head. With the tracks sounding as if they were recorded specifically for this collection Great American Gingerbread is as cohesive and satisfying as any of Rasputina’s non-comp LPs.
The album also includes a DVD of a performance from 2002.