MP3 Catman Cohen - How I Want to Die -- the Catman Chronicles 1
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15 MP3 Songs
ROCK: Folk Rock, POP: Piano
After purchasing a $200 piano from a family in Inglewood, California in 2003, Catman Cohen was reborn.
It is said to be a magical piano containing spirits of many dead composers who guide Catman to find his unique sound. Late at night, he speaks with them and listens to secrets of the Yahweh chord, upon which all of Catman's music composition is based.
The Yahweh chord comes directly from Heaven and, when it is played, soothes the pain of the world and softens the hardest of souls. Every one of Catman's songs contains the Yahweh chord and without it, there would be no Catman song. Without it, there would be no Catman.
With each passing day, Catman struggles to preserve his inner light. Having passed through various trials and tribulations, he now emerges as a compelling, mysterious, songwriter.
It is said that the day he found the Key to the Stars while traveling through the desert, She saved him from ruin. She taught him how to rekindle his inner fire. Now Catman attempts to heal the world through his music, if only as mere brick in a formidable wall.
Catman opposes the current Cult of Celebrity and chooses to make his songs the focus, NOT himself. He believes the country urgently needs new heroes who toil within essential vocations now in crisis.
With the help of his two musical interpreters... producer/arranger
Henry Iglesias and engineer/mixer James Lum...Catman shapes his music.
Assisting him are devoted artist-friends:
They include exceptional vocalists Jimmy Swan, Amy Court, Elly K, Molly Zenobia, Ronee Martin, Thomas Hunter, Jeanette Turner, Ben "Mobius" Simoff, Vessy Mink, Barbara Ochoa, Shasta Strange....plus divine musicians like George Englund, Eliah Levy, Jim McCarty, Malcolm Watson, and more.
Catman extends a special invitation for you to join his dreamscape and welcome his melodies and words into your heart.
*** Stay tuned for news pertaining to future live performances by:
Catman Cohen and His Prayer for America
(Note: the Catman will perform in silhouette only)
Catman is deep and mysterious and he writes from his heart. I like his composition and unpredictability at times. I think he has a dark way of looking at a bright situation.
I didn't want to like HOW I WANT TO DIE but I did. The male singer sounded a lot like Tom Waits. The music was perfect for the songs, and the lyrics, while morbid, were definitely well composed.
Reviewed by Ian Cole/ Shauntelle Hamlett
UNSIGNED Music Magazine
September 3, 2005
Catman Cohen is a composer and talk-sing vocalist. Catman's musical vision is supported by a diversity of players, producers and singers. Cohen writes serious, spiritual songs that tackle social issues. Cohen's style is rock based with slight tones of rap and Yiddish. Catman's music is totally unique yet his messages are universal. HOW I WANT TO DIE is the opening title track. It is a striking tribute to those in the rescue fields. It has a dreamy soundscape contrasted with Catman's deep talk layered with the sweet voice of Amy Court. THE CRIME OF BEING ME features Jimmy Swan an inspired vocalist who sings passionately about prejudice. The instrumentation and in particular, the soaring guitars and poignant pianos, are also moving. BABY, AM I TOO LATE? also addresses a bias, in this case age. The arrangement and varied voices add to the power of the song. HOW I WANT TO DIE is dark and dramatic yet hopeful in its intent to inspire positive changes in a world gone bad. I hope that Catman Cohen and his crew can accomplish this high calling through their compelling songs!
* Recommended Tracks: (HOW I WANT TO DIE; THE CRIME OF BEING ME; BABY, AM I TOO LATE?)
Reviewed by Laura Turner Lynch
July 4, 2005
HOW I WANT TO DIE would be perfect for a musical.... because the songs almost seem to be like scenes from something greater than an album.
The deep grumbly vocals of Catman remind me of Wesley Willis, Tom Waits, or Nick Cave on steroids....
The record perks up whenever vocalist Amy Court lends her graceful voice to the material. Its one of the brighter spots on HOW I WANT TO DIE but not the brightest. That honor belongs to the strange, bizarre, and twisted cover of Kylie Minogue's CAN'T GET YOU OUT OF MY HEAD. It's so over the top and gravelly that it's amazing. It simply has to be heard to be believed.
There's a lot of potential on this record. It wants to be a huge orchestrated album with a lot to say and it's very close to succeeding but it just misses the mark. The record sounds more like it belongs on stage and should have a script written around it. Whether it's a concept album or not doesn't matter as the recording's camp factor is so high that it seems more suited to theater than concert hall. Interesting to say the least.
Reviewed by Paul Zimmerman
First Coast News, ABC 25, NBC 12 (Jacksonville, Florida)
June 23, 2005
"(Catman) is obviously mad as a march hare, a hatter and a box of Frogs all holed up together in a looney ward.... there's occasional sparks of peculiar brilliance."
Reviewed by Chris Prewett
June 13, 2005
"I found myself wanting to listen to the words a number of times for
their depth and realism."
Terry Evanshen, "The Man Who Lost Himself"
June 10, 2005
In PRAYER FOR AMERICA, I wholeheartedly endorse your message, particularly the rejection of materialism, what really matters, and the plea for return to sanity in our nation's values. "There are kids everywhere and I want to save them," (from your song HOW I WANT TO DIE), emphasizes how I feel and what should be important to all of us --- OTHER human beings. If the public can only hear one of your songs from this album, let it be PRAYER FOR AMERICA.
During the past 12 years I have lived and worked in over a dozen natural and unnatural disasters (war, civil conflict, droughts, floods, epidemics, hurricanes, and more) as a civilian nurse providing assistance, food, and health care to thousands in need. Having observed the horrors of combat and conflict first hand, I KNOW that war, anarchy, and fundamentalism destroys the very core of humanity, therefore I fully agree with the understated anti-war message whispered in WHERE ARE MY SOLDIERS?
Mary Lightfine, Founder and President
Volunteers Without Boundaries
May 23, 2005
HOW I WANT TO DIE constitutes the darkest 75 minutes most people will experience in their entire lives. It is nothing less than a poignant reflection of America in decline, the final musical and lyrical gasps of a collapsing Empire.
And it is brilliant.
For those strong souls who manage to listen to the entire CD from beginning to end without slashing their wrists first, they will be left with a most profound, painfully impacting, sonic speculation about family, love, society, mentors, and God.
Yet as disturbing and downbeat as the CD happens to be, it is at the same time very soothing. The CD is a kind of tortured Jewish version of Catholic confession....and when that confession is over, we cannot help but feel as though Catman Cohen acted as the proxy for our own anxieties, secret torments, and regrets -- and in doing so, like some Jewish Christ-surrogate, he releases his pain in order that we may release ours.
There are moments in HOW I WANT TO DIE that are both indelible and astounding. You will never forget them, no matter how hard you might try.
Start with Catman himself and his raw, deep, talk-sing voice. Not since Joe Cocker first burst on the scene has a voice appeared on a recording that is so simultaneously grating and mesmerizing. The man cannot sing and yet, ohmiGod, how the man can sing! He is in desperate need of singing lessons yet, who cares, when he is giving us such an enthralling, lyrical lesson in what really matters in life.
Then move on to Amy Court whose dreamy voice is an ultra-sexy, sweet, estrogen bath, the kind that makes a man want to spend the entire day lying inside its hot, breathy, waters.
Next, Jimmy Swan, and THE CRIME OF BEING ME. Holy hell, this boy can sing... and wail...and wail...and wail. If there is anybody, man or woman, who is not left with at least a single tear in the eye by the song's conclusion, then that person most likely is some kind of metal, unfeeling robot posing as a human. The song is nothing less than the son of "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother," the pop song that became the anthem for brothers across the world -- and yet "Crime" happens to penetrate right through the brotherly bone in a way that "He Ain't Heavy" never quite approximates.
Other special vocal honors go to Ronee Martin, who sings on the cover version of the old hit, WISHIN' ON A STAR. She is everything Whitney Houston used to be before the poor girl got hooked on drugs. Martin's voice is nothing less than a larynx barometer of pain, a most soulful measure of multiple love disappointments and many spilled tears.
As a stand-in for the daughters of the world, Elly K provides extremely sweet, vocal, sugar-coating in a touching, regretful, song about a dead father.
Molly Zenobia takes a fairly ordinary love song about VANCOUVER and instills strange, hot, and unforgettable magic into its verses.
And finally, take a close listen to Catman's remake of the Kylie Minogue party hit, CAN'T GET YOU OUT OF MY HEAD. Catman's suicide version will be requested repeatedly on radio stations across the world by those shell-shocked fans of the song who simply cannot believe what he did to it.
According to the press kit, Catman Cohen, (working with his most proficient production team: arranger Henry Iglesias and engineer James Lum) will be releasing a follow-up CD shortly, entitled HOW I WANT TO LIVE, and the title suggests a more upbeat vibe. I only pray that Catman...as a most singular Poet of Darkness...as a 21st century Jim Morrison meets Barry White meets The Zombies meets Bob Dylan... does not allow joie de vivre to undermine his original and strange perceptions of the world.
What I Really Hated: Some songs use drum tracks (instead of live drums) and that makes them sound more "robotic," less flesh and blood. Not sure if that's laziness or lack of money.
Favorite songs: FATHER YOU BELIEVED, THE CRIME OF BEING ME, THE MENTOR, VANCOUVER, FLUFFLE-O (Hidden Track)
Reviewed by Marc Seltzer
April 29, 2005
"Having listened to your CD, I certainly have similar sentiments that you express. Although I'm not a person who listens to music with words on it, I am not sure I feel qualified to comment. But I feel great peril...I feel Bush is worse than Hitler. I feel we live in a society numb from television without the directed intelligence or compassion to lead a Love Revolution we need...and I appreciate anybody trying to do something about that."
Patch Adams, Social Activist
April 27, 2005
"The disc is innovative, there is no denying it - what is really exciting during HOW I WANT TO DIE is Cohen's burning desire to work through any constrictions (working in a pop and rock domain) and make vital, thriving music in genres that were previously thought tapped out. The Catman-esque intensity achieved during A PRAYER FOR AMERICA lights up what was previously a sedate (for the most part) CD and really shows that Catman's music knows no bounds."
"There are moments during HOW I WANT TO DIE that are amongst the most impressive snippets of music heard this year - for example, take the pseudo-rapping that (Iglesias) does during FAMILY OF ONE. What really distinguishes this album from any other one is a devotion to the creation of good music, the infusion of said music with soul and a political message, and a continually revolutionary view to music that allows for a number of different sounds to be created on this disc. Cohen is Cat Stevens, Warren Zevon, Frank Zappa and a whole slew of other influential singer-songwriters in the American folk tradition. I know that not all of the music on this disc is created with a sound I will like, but I can appreciate the process that puts it on this disc."
Top Tracks: A PRAYER FOR AMERICA, SUNSET IN LAS VEGAS
James McQuiston, Editor
April 5, 2005
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