Upon listening to the Curios latest offering You may sense a certain familiarity with the songs. The first cut, "Beautiful" offers a hint as to the accessability of The Curios compositions. Nancy Hall, the primary writer, brushes clear vocals across her musical canvas allowing her influences to bleed through, painting her as an artist to be noticed. The ascending guitar line is reminiscence in reverse of a past Nora Jones hit. Her lyrics are a conversation and her voice, genuine in its sincerity, offers emotions from innocence to the playfulness of youth. The simple elegance of Lee Parvin's piano and Jim Kerwin's bass build and fill this fist song, yet manage to preserve to the simle motif. Harbor features a Stones like rhythm guitar while the change in the character of Hall's voice illustrates the definition oof vocal styling. Just when you get comfortable with Marc Games' quirky guitar line, Hall's voice chameleon like leads the song into a march that is part Beatles, part Doors.
One of my favorites, Sailor on a Windless Sea ,exemplifies what The Curios do so well, establishing a strong groove that pulls you right in. When Parvin chimes in with his low harmony, his vocals seem to reach up from the depths to punctuate the despair of a sailor in the doldrums. Always Be Your Girl is a straight ahead rocker that shows Hall's maturity as a writer in that it exhibits the belief of many great songwriters that a strong chorus is the back bone of a song. In "Hollow" Hall evokes a classic 80's rock Diva. By the time you hear Cherries on the Ground you may have an epiphany. That is you may be cognizant that, in light of mainstream marketed music, The Curios as a collective have a great commitment to the heritage of the rock genre. "Trampoline" with its lilting waltz will make you feel like a kid again. Every track on the album seems to be well placed and the one song written as a collaboration of a Games' groove will have you singing along to its Sergio Mendes Brazill '66 feel. There are 15 songs on this album made the way albums used to be made. In other words there are no filler tracks. Every song is a jewel. The Curios may not be the next big thing, although that remains to be seen, they are the real deal and this work establishes them firmly in the realm of accomplished artists. With Mike Tyler's contributions The Curios have created a CD that is a blast to listen to. The Great American Songbook is alive.
This music not only has to be listened to, it has to be absorbed because it draws you in with it's poetry, soothing vocals, and masterly musical accompaniment. If you've had a stressful day take a lyrically satisfying time out. If you want to feel something new, lay your head on this "pillow". It's a graceful mood changer. I have found a new friend in music...
I love the way Curios grows on you... I'm taken back each time I hear this CD! "Beautiful" brought me back to the good ol' days of Ricki Lee Jones...so much so I had to play it over and over again! This colabration is crisp, melodious and deserves our attention! Love Nancy's clear voice...and the piano....my goodness! This is a CD you want to purchase so that you can fall in love with it each time you hear it!!
Labels: Customer Reviews, Fresh From Reference Recordings, Pillow Book, The Curios