Miss Murgatroid and Petra Haden:hearts and Daggers


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By: Dennis Cook

Haden & Murgatroid whip up quite the flutter & wow on Hearts & Daggers (File Under: Music). That they do so using accordion, violin, viola and exquisite, frequently wordless human voices is quite the feat, made all the more impressive considering one never notices these seeming limitations - a trait both ladies have shown throughout their career, taking misunderstood or maligned elements and making them twinkle with fresh light. Dancing on lithe, classically trained toes, wearing threadbare rock 'n' roll rags, the pair choreograph a curious, oddly beautiful journey through sound that rewards one's patience and openness to non-standard modes of expression. Full of heartache (both expressed and implied) and fragmented conjecture, Hearts & Daggers warms one like sunlight slowly pulling our body from deep shade, inching up our trunk with turtle steadiness. This could appeal to lonely librarians and Brandenburg intimates with equal force, the new fave of Belle and Sebastian cardingers and folks who wouldn't rock to save their lives. It is, for lack of a better phrase, its own thing, and as such speaks a tongue outside the usual Rosetta Stone.

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