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Doll Goes It Alone
Posted By Curtis Ross at Mar 26, 2009 at 12:21 PM

Updated Mar 26, 2009 at 01:18 PM

Fear not, Dresden Doll fans. Amanda Palmer’s solo album and tour don’t spell the end for your favorite keyboard-and-drums duo.

“We experienced classic band burn out, too much touring and too much time together,” Palmer says by telephone from a tour stop in New Orleans.

“We’re getting along fantastically now, which is what we thought would happen,” Palmer says of Dolls’ drummer Brian Viglione and herself. “We just did a show a couple of months ago and it felt effortless.”

Palmer spent the interim recording “Who Killed Amanda Palmer,” produced by fellow pianist Ben Folds. The album allowed her to work outside the Dolls’ two-man set-up, but lyrically Palmer continued to explore the dark side.

Case in point: “Oasis,” a brisk, buoyant pop tune with Beach Boys-style harmonies about a teenage girl who says being date raped and having an abortion aren’t a problem because she just got a letter from her favorite band, Oasis.

The song earned Palmer reprimands from irony-challenged British censors who accused her of making light of sensitive subjects.

“This song is about denial; it’s about a girl who can’t find it in herself to take her situation seriously,” Palmer wrote in a blog on The Huffington Post.

“So often, especially as a woman, you’re told what your response is supposed to be,” Palmer says. “You’re not allowed to own and feel your own responses. That’s the real darkness.

“As a human being, you can find happiness only when you are owning your own experience instead of other people’s,” Palmer says. “If there were X number of abortions last year, there was that number of different emotional experiences.”

Palmer isn’t afraid to take on big topics, or big stars. At South by Southwest recently, her panel was delayed because Quincy Jones’ speech went long.

“He had our room and so there were a couple hundred people lined up outside the room,” Palmer says. “He’s just talking and his panel was supposed to end at 3 p.m., and it’s 3:30 p.m. and isn’t there someone at South by Southwest who can tell him?

So Palmer and fellow panelist John Wesley Harding serenaded the delayed crowd with, what else, a version of the Jones-produced “We Are the World.”

Palmer performs Thursday, March 26 at State Theatre, 687 Central Ave. in St. Petersburg. Vermillion Lies opens. Show time is 8 p.m. Tickets are $16. Call (727) 895-3045.