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neumu
Tuesday, September 2, 2014 
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+ Donato Wharton - Body Isolations
+ Svalastog - Woodwork
+ Tim Hecker - Harmony In Ultraviolet
+ Rosy Parlane - Jessamine
+ Jarvis Cocker - The Jarvis Cocker Record
+ Múm - Peel Session
+ Deloris - Ten Lives
+ Minimum Chips - Lady Grey
+ Badly Drawn Boy - Born In The U.K.
+ The Hold Steady - Boys And Girls Together
+ The Blood Brothers - Young Machetes
+ The Places - Songs For Creeps
+ Camille - Le Fil
+ Wolf Eyes - Human Animal
+ Christina Carter - Electrice
+ The Decemberists - The Crane Wife
+ Junior Boys - So This Is Goodbye
+ Various Artists - Musics In The Margin
+ Rafael Toral - Space
+ Bob Dylan - Modern Times
+ Excepter - Alternation
+ Chris Thile - How To Grow A Woman From The Ground
+ Brad Mehldau - Live in Japan
+ M Ward - Post-War
+ Various Artists - Touch 25
+ The Mountain Goats - Get Lonely
+ The White Birch - Come Up For Air
+ Camera Obscura - Let's Get Out of This Country
+ Coachwhips - Double Death
+ Various Artists - Tibetan And Bhutanese Instrumental And Folk Music, Volume 2
+ Giuseppe Ielasi - Giuseppe Ielasi
+ Cex - Actual Fucking
+ Sufjan Stevens - The Avalanche
+ Leafcutter John - The Forest And The Sea
+ Carla Bozulich - Evangelista
+ Barbara Morgenstern - The Grass Is Always Greener
+ Robin Guthrie - Continental
+ Peaches - Impeach My Bush
+ Oakley Hall - Second Guessing
+ Klee - Honeysuckle
+ The Court & Spark - Hearts
+ TV On The Radio - Return To Cookie Mountain
+ Awesome Color - Awesome Color
+ Jenny Wilson - Love And Youth
+ Asobi Seksu - Citrus
+ Marsen Jules - Les Fleurs
+ The Moore Brothers - Murdered By The Moore Brothers
+ Regina Spektor - Begin To Hope
+ The 1900s - Plume Delivery EP
+ Alejandro Escovedo - The Boxing Mirror
+ Function - The Secret Miracle Fountain
+ Sonic Youth - Rather Ripped
+ Loscil - Plume
+ Boris - Pink
+ Deadboy And The Elephantmen - We Are Night Sky
+ Glissandro 70 - Glissandro 70
+ Calexico - Garden Ruin (Review #2)
+ Calexico - Garden Ruin (Review #1)
+ The Flaming Lips - At War With The Mystics
+ The Glass Family - Sleep Inside This Wheel
+ Various Artists - Songs For Sixty Five Roses
+ The Fiery Furnaces - Bitter Tea
+ Motorpsycho - Black Hole/Blank Canvas
+ The Red Krayola - Introduction
+ Metal Hearts - Socialize
+ American Princes - Less And Less
+ Sondre Lerche And The Faces Down Quartet - Duper Sessions
+ Supersilent - 7
+ Band Of Horses - Everything All The Time
+ Dudley Perkins - Expressions
+ Growing - Color Wheel
+ Red Carpet - The Noise Of Red Carpet
+ The Essex Green - Cannibal Sea
+ Espers - II
+ Wilderness - Vessel States

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Hope Sandoval & The Warm Inventions
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Bavarian Fruit Bread
Rough Trade
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Hope Sandoval doesn't so much sing as breathe, but it's a captivating breathing — more so than some people's singing, even. She can be ethereal, though she avoids being vulnerable or cute by forgoing the lilts and chirps of her peers. She can convey an icy distance, without having to shout to prove she's tough. Her whispery, breathy voice feels as if she's allowing you a brief glimpse into her private self, but she leaves the mystery intact.

On her new CD, Bavarian Fruit Bread, Sandoval sings a little more than she did with Mazzy Star. My Bloody Valentine's Colm O'Ciosoig, who, with Sandoval, forms the Warm Inventions, rarely leaves his foot on the pedal as long as he did in My Bloody Valentine. The fuzz and feedback are cleared away, and what remains is a quiet mixture of folk and country — though with the vocals and hazy guitar effects, it avoids being big-hair-and-tight-jeans country. Sandoval herself plays some harmonica, and her wizardry with the glockenspiel lightens the music. (It's worth noting that the British folk guitarist Bert Jansch appears on "Butterfly Mornings" and "Charlotte.")

Sandoval is at her most bewitching in "Feeling of Gaze." The song captures the moment of eye contact when two people realize their lust is mutual. A cello and bass express the deep, intense longing, while the keyboard and Sandoval's voice provide the warmth — or heat. She sings, "Got your hair down low, like a woman again. Got the feeling of gaze at the doorway again." There's a thickness in Sandoval's voice, so that hair comes out sounding like hail. She reveals her desire, but manages to hold on to the privacy and quietness that are a part of the feeling.

"Around My Smile" picks up where "Feeling of Gaze" leaves off. Now the hips start to sway, and the intensity gives way to smiles. Both songs talk about a connection happening again. In "Around My Smile," Sandoval sings "Got me goin' on again, around my smile. And I got a thoughtless feeling inside. I've got it going on." All of Sandoval's lyrics are a bit of a mystery, some for the sole reason that she barely brings her voice above a whisper. This song sounds playful, though. It's one of the most uptempo songs on the CD, with O'Ciosoig's backing vocals teasing Sandoval's.

Mazzy Star's "Fade Into You" was a sort of anthem a few years ago, used in countless TV shows and films as the lonely outcast sat in a bedroom and pined, or else triumphed at the high-school dance. Sandoval's voice and the slow, quiet tempo of her music are like flypaper for a certain type of girl, even as they're like sandpaper for many guys. If you're one of those girls, Bavarian Fruit Bread won't disappoint. It's magical and mysterious, compelling and complex. Just like a girl.


by Lori Miller Barrett




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