(Artwork care of Karen Ramsay (www.karenramsay.com), profile photo care of brianlackeyphotography.com)

Friday, May 27, 2011

CD review - My M.O., Bonfire (2011)

My M.O.'s music is like fusion cuisine: disparate traditions meld together to create a bridge between worlds. Like their music, the three women in the band come from different worlds: an Australian rapper, a Texas DJ, and a Jamaican guitarist. The combination on Bonfire is clearly pop oriented, but happy to borrow from electro, club beats, and rock.

The lead off track, Bonfire Man starts out with an indie pop feel. The sparse, contrasting guitar parts set a mood, but then the bass and the beat move it firmly into a club space. The vocal treatment adds its vote for the club. Despite all this, though, the shreds of distorted guitar and sweet keyboard riffs force the song into a middle ground. The net effect is an extremely catchy, dreamy pop gem. The segue into What I Want is nicely executed, taking a dreamy start that echoes a piece of Bonfire Man's lyric. This time the groove settles into electro pop crossed with modern pop.

My M.O. shows a lot of versatility: tight Electro funk on Paper Chase, trippy heavy bass groove on Rock Steady, a sort of electronic disco for Modus Operandi. Each track brings its own blend of dance oriented pop, but nothing obscures the continuity of My M.O.'s groove. Even the heavily glitched remix of Bonfire Man (Doctrations Remix) swirls solid percussion work with experimental headiness.

Aside from Bonfire Man, my favorite track is the R&B groove of Love Me Down (HNH Remix). The lead off harp riff, light dusting of electro, and world beat percussion come together in a delicate balance that perfectly supports the soulful singing.

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