Thursday, December 01, 2005

lo-fi goodness

Blank Unstaring Heirs of Doom - Jana Hunter

Jana Hunter first appeared solo on the Devendra Banhart-compiled Golden Apples of the Sun, an assortment of psyche-folk (/"freak-folk") songs that would see several of the featured artists pursuing solo careers of their own, and creating a nice little niche for themselves in the now-crowded musical genre. Jana Hunter has to be one of them. Earlier this year, she appeared on the Jana Hunter/Devendra Banhart split record, which proved her to be as lyrically and vocally distinctive as Banhart or even the amazing Josephine Foster ('Black Haven' has to be one of the most haunting songs of the year). Blank Unstaring Heirs of Doom is her first true solo album (it's actually a collection of her songs from the past decade or so) , and it's a strikingly cohesive collection which finds her fairly-more-controlled earthy voice telling engaging stories again, accompanied only by her acoustic guitar. At times, she sounds a lot like Karen Dalton (especially on 'Angels All Cry the Same') but Hunter's lyrics are obviously more melancholic, her strumming more arhythmic. I'll admit I don't get the upbeat final inclusion - 'K' - the keyboard bursts were totally unexpected. But yeah. Overall, this collection of unfiltered melancholia haunts - especially when listened to on a rainy day.

Her page on myspace.


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