In May, Kara Keith will be recording a new record in Montreal with Grammy-nominated producer Howard Bilerman (Arcade Fire, Wolf Parade). Right now, though, sheâ€™s released an EP. And itâ€™s good. Really good.
Kara was the lead singer and keyboard player for Falconhawk, a band hot with college kids in Canada,
but now sheâ€™s breaking out on her own. (One account I read says she had originally tried to name her new band â€œThe Tight Niggaz,â€ but soon gave it up.)
Her EP starts with its least accessible track. â€œGorgeous Gets the Goldâ€ sounds like something Laurie Anderson might have made. Itâ€™s eccentric chick music in the extreme. Nothing wrong with that, but itâ€™s not pulling me in. But this odd song is followed by pure pop: The bouncy piano-and-syth cut, â€œKick This City.â€ This is a fun tune, but it doesnâ€™t offer anything
unfamiliar. Iâ€™m not bowled over yet, but the third track comes and that all changes. A solid guitar riff, a horn section, a rad keyboard solo . . . â€œGet Up and Go Goâ€ is as good as anything off of The Killerâ€™s Samâ€™s Town. A great throwback to the heyday of new wave. Right on the heels of that toe-tapper comes â€œDirty Girl,â€ with quick tempo changes, great lyrics, and wonderful vocals. This is the gem of the disc, which, on repeated listens, is fast becoming a shoo-in for one of the best EPs of the year. â€œKnosses,â€ the cover, retreats back to the weirdness of the first song, but after the ride Iâ€™ve just been on Iâ€™m happy for the slowdown. It also works much better. A forlorn hook (â€œYou are lost, I will find you anywhereâ€) over sad piano. Kara harmonizes with herself and makes my ears happy.
Check it out.