Here's another reason why you should never ignore
Mayfly, from husband and wife team Tony and Kimberly
to trump just about everything the much-invoked Elephant 6
released this year. Mayfly is melodic.
Mayfly is whimsical.
And Mayfly manages to avoid being a billboard for the
self-indulgent impulses -- no small feat for an album that
among its list of instruments.
These are good-natured, upbeat songs, balanced on the wall
between pop and
folk. It's the extra details that catch you unaware, like
horns that add a jaunty swagger to "Geetar-Boy". You'll
find more horn action
on "Dust Bunnies", though the real treasure
there is the two-part
harmony on the chorus. When the Paglias sing "Don't you
wish you'd thought of
it first," you'll wish you had.
"Holiday" mixes more winning horn melodies with an airy melody
reminiscent of the Legendary Jim Ruiz Group, while "Amelia,
invokes Of Montreal with a snazzy "Raindrops Keep Falling on
tempo, handbell choir accompaniment and plenty of burbling
horns and wind
Think you've heard it all? Not 'til you've checked out the
of "We Don't Talk", a shiny, delicate track that seems a
little out of place
amidst Mayfly's straightforward guitar strumming and
You'll also enjoy the solemn, piano-tinged confessional tone
which hides a myriad of stylistic shout-outs beneath its surface.
The most obvious strike against Mayfly is that
there's not much here that
hasn't been done before. People who've had more than their
fill of the so-called
Athens sound will be all too willing to write this disc off
as more of the
same. And yes, like those works, Mayfly is an
throwback; it's when you listen closely, and witness the
and loving care applied to its creation, that you'll realize
that this album
is something special.
You'll get a clue from the packaging. Mayfly comes
hand-wrapped and twine-bound
in stamped brown paper. What's more, the booklet isn't
printed; the tiny pieces of
art are hand-mounted with old-fashioned photo-album
corner-pockets. Most of the art itself
is apparently the work of Tony Paglia's great-grandmother,
and it's quite lovely. If
this sounds to you like a terribly expensive and impractical
packaging strategy, you're
probably right. Perhaps that's why there are only a few
hundred copies of Mayfly out
Once people discover the Paglias' work, those few hundred
copies will disappear very quickly.