Queen of Denmark (album)

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Queen of Denmark
Studio album by John Grant
Released April 19, 2010
Recorded July–October 2008 and May–July 2009 in Denton, Texas
Genre Indie folk
Length 51:16
Label Bella Union
Producer John Grant, Paul Alexander, Eric Pulido
John Grant chronology
Queen of Denmark
(2010)
Pale Green Ghosts
(2013)

Queen of Denmark is the debut solo album by former The Czars frontman John Grant, released on April 19, 2010 on the Bella Union label.[1] Queen of Denmark is a collaboration between Grant and American folk rock band Midlake and produced by Grant himself in collaboration with Midlake members Paul Alexander and Eric Pulido. It was recorded over two four-months periods, July to October 2008 and May to July 2009, in Midlake's recording studio in Denton, Texas.[2]

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 2.5/5 stars[3]
BBC (favorable)[4]
The Guardian 4/5 stars[5]
The Independent 4/5 stars[6]
The Line of Best Fit (recommended)[7]
Mojo 5/5 stars[2]
MusicOMH 4.5/5 stars[8]
NME 8/10 stars[9]
The Sunday Times 4/5 stars[10]

In the May 2010 issue of Mojo, the album received the seldom-awarded Instant Classic label. Following Joanna Newsom's Have One On Me, it is the second album to receive this honor since Fleet Foxes in 2008. The reviewer wrote: "If Queen of Denmark were only comprised of ... self-lacerating ballads it would still be a work of transcendent beauty, but the second half of the album finds Grant confronting romantic loss with astonishing depth of feeling."[2] In December, the magazine selected Queen of Denmark as its choice for the Best Album of 2010.[11]

The BBC Music review website described the album as "One of the most deeply satisfying debut albums of recent times", and concluded: "Queen of Denmark transcends the sum of its influences by concentrating on the irresistible appeal of sad yet optimistic love songs, classy arrangements and a dark and handsome croon. Midlake’s only mistake is making John Grant’s startling debut better than their own records."[4]

Mark Edwards wrote in The Sunday Times, "One listen to 'Where Dreams Go to Die', for example, and you’ll realise that while Grant can’t attain perfection in his actual life, he gets pretty close in his art."[10]

The Guardian reviewer wrote that "after descending into a personal hell of booze, drugs and giving up music for waiting tables, the Coloradan [John Grant] has emerged with a colossus. Backed by superfans Midlake, these are songs of impossible love, near-suicide and redemption, with an air of vastness and contemplation recalling Dennis Wilson's masterpiece, Pacific Ocean Blue."[5]

In The Independent, Andy Gill, wrote of the album: "a near-perfect marriage of his warm baritone with their lush woodwind and keyboard textures, bring to tender life Grant's tales of growing up gay in the midwest."[6]

Irish musician Sinéad O'Connor covered "Queen of Denmark" on her 2012 album How About I Be Me (And You Be You)?.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by John Grant. 

No. Title Length
1. "TC and Honeybear"   5:04
2. "I Wanna Go to Marz"   3:56
3. "Where Dreams Go to Die"   6:02
4. "Sigourney Weaver"   3:29
5. "Chicken Bones"   3:36
6. "Silver Platter Club"   4:09
7. "It's Easier"   4:36
8. "Outer Space"   3:13
9. "Jesus Hates Faggots"   3:46
10. "Caramel"   3:33
11. "Leopard & Lamb"   4:39
12. "Queen of Denmark"   4:47
Total length:
51:16

Personnel[edit]

Midlake[edit]

Additional musicians[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Queen of Denmark. Bella Union, April 19, 2010. Retrieved April 29, 2010
  2. ^ a b c Male, Andrew (May 2010). "Redemption songs". Mojo (198): 90–92. 
  3. ^ Leahey, Andrew. "Queen of Denmark: Review". Allmusic. Retrieved October 31, 2010. 
  4. ^ a b Mulholland, Garry (April 15, 2010). "Queen of Denmark review". BBC. Retrieved October 29, 2010. 
  5. ^ a b Simpson, Dave (April 22, 2010). "John Grant: Queen of Denmark". The Guardian. Retrieved October 29, 2010. 
  6. ^ a b Gill, Andy (April 6, 2010). "John Grant with Midlake, Queen of Denmark". The Independent. Retrieved October 29, 2010. 
  7. ^ Shepherd, Sam. "John Grant - Queen of Denmark". The Line of Best Fit. Retrieved June 9, 2010. 
  8. ^ Brody, Gideon. "John Grant with Midlake - Queen Of Denmark". MusicOMH. Retrieved October 30, 2010. 
  9. ^ Harris, Tessa (April 16, 2010). "Album review: John Grant - 'The Queen Of Denmark' (Bella Union)". NME. Retrieved October 30, 2010. 
  10. ^ a b Edwards, Mark (April 18, 2010). "John Grant: Queen of Denmark". The Sunday Times. Retrieved October 29, 2010. 
  11. ^ "John Grant getting his sad mojo working". Toronto Star, December 3, 2010.