2011-04-25For Tune-Yards’ second release, Merrill Garbus has gone a bit Lo-Fi. Not that WhoKill doesn’t have its share of samples, effects, and tribal beats. There are also plenty of straight up vocals, displaying Ms. Garbus’ awesome range. She can go from guttural rapping (“Gangsta”), to pop chanteuse (“Wooly Wolly Gong”), to something akin to Bjork (“You Yes You”)...sometimes all in one song (“Powa”). All this is backed by interesting, often home-made instrumentation. Songs often seem patched together, but it doesn’t seem to be detrimental...indeed it works to advantage. While WhoKill is intriguing and somewhat eccentric, it doesn’t quite measure up to Tune-yards’ esoteric first release, Birdbrains, an album that I liked immensely. Rebecca Ruth
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