Pin It
Favorite

CD Review 

by Sheri Boggs


Hailed as "The Girl from Ipanema Meets Indie Rock," the Mosquitos' debut eponymous CD (on Bar None Records) abounds in lulling bossa nova rhythms, pensive lyrics and daiquiri-smooth vocals. As the PR legend goes, one member was repeatedly exposed to Sergio Mendes' Brasil 65 in utero, another grew up playing on the white sand beaches of Ipanema dreaming of Manhattan, and a third was grounded for "hotwiring the Wurlitzer organ at the First Church of Divine Grace."


OK, so maybe such PR spin veers dangerously close to being painfully, self-consciously precious, but the fact remains, the Mosquitos are a pleasing fusion of Hammond organ honks, frontwoman Juju Stulbach's breathy intonations and cool indie pop 'tude. The first track, "Rainsong," is as effervescent as seltzer water, as feverishly hypnotic as a touch of malaria. Sung in Portuguese -- Stulbach did, in fact, grow up near Rio de Janeiro -- "Rainsong" is one of those songs you desperately want to sing along to even if you have no idea what you're saying.


Stulbach occasionally hands off the mike to real-life partner Chris Root, whose voice isn't nearly as good as hers, but who adds a sense of geek longing to such warbly love songs as "Juju & amp; Blue" and "Mosquito" (an amusing meditation on the more parasitic aspects of romance). The bossa nova songs are good and plenty-ful -- half pink sweetness, half hipster black. The use of the organ is deliciously kitschy -- several songs seem to be set on Hammond's infamous "Teen Beat" key -- but the Mosquitos exercise enough restraint that it never gets to be too much. A similar sense of friendly distance infuses the more indie pop selections as well. "Policeman" is an autobiographical story of running into trouble with the Brazilian law; "So Far Away" has a nice bit of Marty Robbins-esque guitar work, while "Semente" employs such space jazz elements as echoing sonar beeps and ethereal twinkles.


The Mosquitos' first American tour has them opening for the likes of Shonen Knife and Clem Snide, and their "endless summer" sound has even been co-opted by the Bailey's Irish Cream folks for their new "Mini Bailey's" commercial. Still, they're not well known enough yet to feel like you're just listening to the latest flavor of the week. So rapidamente, catch yourself some Mosquito action before everyone else discovers them come spring.





Publication date: 02/05/04
  • Pin It

Latest in Comment

  • Growing Pains
  • Growing Pains

    When the only constant is change itself, we'd best saddle up and make the most of it
    • Aug 25, 2016
  • Access for Sale?
  • Access for Sale?

    Trail Mix: Clinton's shaky Foundation, Trump's questionable staffers
    • Aug 25, 2016
  • Why I'm With Her
  • Why I'm With Her

    Ignore the chants: Hillary Clinton has earned America's trust from her life of public service
    • Aug 25, 2016
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Tue | Wed | Thu | Fri | Sat | Sun
Bodies Human: Anatomy in Motion

Bodies Human: Anatomy in Motion @ Mobius Science Center

Tuesdays-Sundays. Continues through Dec. 31

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by Sheri Boggs

  • BOOKS
  • BOOKS

    From puppies to a new James Bond adventure, there are tons of great reads this season
    • Dec 3, 2015
  • Beer and Branding in PDX

    • Sep 15, 2005
  • Pictures of an Expedition

    First things first. Author Claire Rudolf Murphy has it on good authority that "Sacajawea" is pronounced the way we've always done it here in the Inland Northwest. Soft "j" sound, accents on the first and fourth syllables. Of course now, his
    • Jun 23, 2005
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • 'Unreasonable Threat to Life and Property'

    Spokane's rental housing has problems, but landlord and tenant groups are split on a solution
    • Aug 11, 2016
  • 'End of Story'

    Condon administration aims to close the controversial Frank Straub chapter — but last week's scathing report has irrevocably changed the narrative
    • Aug 4, 2016
  • More »

Top Tags in
News & Comment

Briefs


election 2016


green zone


marijuana


trail mix


Readers also liked…

  • Mothers and Leaders
  • Mothers and Leaders

    History often overlooks the women who powered the politics of the civil rights movement
    • Jan 7, 2015
  • Something in the Water
  • Something in the Water

    Publisher's Note
    • Feb 25, 2015

© 2016 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation