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5 June 2009

Ara - 'Pick up and Run 2007' (What The ...?)

Lexington, Kentucky husband-and-wife duo Ara grew out of her solo project; he plays in Hair Police and other weird projects but brings the dirty lightbulbs to this recording.  We get two live performances, one on each side, followed by a coda of fireworks and the sounds of "hanging out".  It's a weird title, Pick up and Run, as it somewhat jars with the hanging out feeling; the music, well, it loops back on itself all the time too.  Ara really showcases Sara O'Keefe's talents with reeds;  despite the murky fidelity you can hear a great range of tones.  Actually, the murky fidelity enhances this record - it's unmistakably part of the Ara sound, if such a thing exists.  The vocals and reverb sing through the vinyl and my copy is a little bit warped so there's an even better ebb and flow to these already elliptical musings.  The second side has a drumset, musing in an appropriately lackadaisacal Cloudy Murry manner.  When it starts to get too jazz it pulls back into psychedelic folkdrone, and vice-versa; this tension is pretty key to the understanding of the whole album.  The self-released cassette, which will maybe be reviewed on the forthcoming Erratic Delusional Majestic Spindle Preprocessor blog, feels like the first step and this a steady gait.  We await the gallop (and apologies for the horse metaphor, but, hey, it's Central Kentucky we're talking about ....)

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