It may be time to retire the convenient comparisons to Joni and Laurie and Suzanne and Kate, because Jane Siberry's Beverly Theatre show on Friday was the work of a distinctive, and distinctly non-derivative, performer. Less novel but more assertive than she was at last year's Roxy show, the theatrical Canadian gave full rein to her quirks--oddly choreographed singer/dancers, muttered monologues, surreal lyric twists--but made those quirks more captivating than cloying.
That's partly because she's simply a lot of fun. Mostly, though, it's because her music--shifting abruptly from full-bodied rock to skeletal, atmospheric passages--is an ideally skewed vehicle for lyrics in which the characters seem perpetually disoriented and displaced, whether at a cocktail party or in a prison cell. And amid her wry but distanced precision, it was heartening to hear "You Don't Need" and "The Taxi Ride," two deeply moving faded-love songs that found Siberry unexpectedly open and vulnerable.