Green Blue Fire

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Husik's partnership with Beaumont Hannant took the full-length album plunge here with Green Blue Fire, a fascinating collection that confirms Husik's reputation as one of America's best, most underrated musicians and performers. Dance purists will likely kick against the fact that these aren't "real" songs for raves or chill-outs, while indie rock purists in turn no doubt find the results too synth and beat-based for their tastes. But it's this kind of small-minded limitation that both Husik and Hannant are kicking against, and the results aren't merely cool just by existing, but because the end results are so enjoyable. Rather than trying any radical reinventions of style, Green Blue Fire seeks to translate the glazed, haunting haze of Husik's work in general to a more beat-oriented context. Songs like "The Bird" show the collaboration in full flight, Husik's dark keen wafting through the steady breakbeats and bass tones like a lost ghost, her guitar work the crowning touch, a dreamy loop of phased feedback. What's especially fascinating is hearing Husik's wonderfully witty and often pointedly barbed lyrics in combination with the futuristic glow of the music -- consider the demolition of American self-images on "Bad Head Day," Husik sweetly crooning lines like "Rave on America/You frothing old blister," or the mysterious ramble about...friends, lovers? "All Hands on Deck," the music swirling gently up and up. The songs are lovely enough to enjoy without paying attention, but there's a reward to be had in letting the whole experience sink in. Hands-down album standout: "Haunt Me," with Husik's E-Bow guitar work and wonderful rich voice mixed so perfectly with Hannant's light, whizzing beats and pulses that it almost defies description, a pop/psych/dance dream at once melancholy and summery.

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