Instant Grammy Review: Taylor Swift, “Mean” / The Civil Wars, “Barton Hollow”
Posted by Rolling in the Grammyson 02/12/2012 at 10:19 PM
Rather than perform alongside their Hunger Games soundtrack collaborator Taylor Swift, Grammy Award winners the Civil Wars emphasized their role as the “opening act” to the pop-country queen, singing an all too brief 60 seconds of their nominated track “Barton Hollow.” One guitar, two voices and the haunting feeling that this is the beginning of something special. Further proof: their site crashed following their performance. Sure, bowing out early for typical Grammy performance of a hit single will just leave us wanting more of their soul-tugging sound…or something. To her credit, Swift’s recreation of “Mean” began with slightly less of her typical schtick; she chose to replace the trademark astonishment and naivete with sass, hip thrusting on every long banjo chord and the a key lyrical audible that will make the Recording Academy think twice before ever bypassing her for Lady Antebellum again (“Someday I’ll be singing this at the Grammys”). But it’s an award show on a major network, which means she’ll ultimately unveil her precociousness and unrelenting surprise that people will actually choose to respond favorably to her time after time. She’s more than perfected the art of a pleasurable big show performance, but we just hope that standing ovation had more to do with her opening act.
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