Cat Power a little scattered but ultimately satisfies with a fine performance

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Chan Marshall, better known as Cat Power (41 years old) has had a chequered history of alcohol abuse, broken relationships and psychiatric episodes.

Fresh from the break-up of a long-term relationship with Gangster Squad actor, Giovanni Ribisi, and with the release of her new album, Sun, she appeared on stage this week as part of the Perth International Arts Festival.

Model-esque in her studio portraits, Cat Power is actually pint-sized on stage, dressed in black jeans and a black plain tee while sporting a new platinum blonde, choppy haircut (a declaration to her metamorphosis, maybe?).

The singer started off with The Greatest, a powerful and tragic tune with raw vocals and a tempo that continues to build until a crashing conclusion. Nonetheless it proved a hypnotising opener.

She quickly belted out three songs back to back sometimes seeming a little disorientated while clinging to two mics and avoiding interaction with the crowd but wooing them with her feline essence.

Manhattan – one of the better tracks on her new album – was a disappointment as Cat seemed to lose time and missed the harmonies. The song could have had the entire house out of their seat, but the artist appeared somewhat disoriented in her delivery. After trying to compose herself, she quickly called a band conference onstage, then began chatting to her head technician all the while leaving her audience in deft silence.

Returning focused – finally – and after whispering a few apologies, she proceeded to serenade the crowd with that haunting and ethereal voice once more.

The lead guitarist polarised us with his handy work – sharp, skilled and gifted. He rotated between guitar, electric piano and harmonica while Cat continued to enamor the crowd, clutching those two mics and twisting and wiggling in her skin.

During a darkened stage, with the spotlights on her back and singing in a French tongue, the audience finally seemed totally engulfed in her power.

In all, Cat Power delivered a soulful, gritty and raw performance while enrapturing us with her raspy, velvet voice. A little wobbly on her feet and apologetic at times, still she managed to belt out 19 tracks then left the crowd while handing out roses to rousing applause. Despite the couple of hiccups, it would be well worth seeing this girl again.