Hungry Lucy – Pulse of the Earth

I wasn’t even aware that Hungry Lucy even had a discography, much less a new CD. I immediately looked for stuff on iTunes. They have everything, including a live CD. Interesting.

Hungry Lucy is the musical child of Christa Belle and War-N Harrison. Together since 1998, they have provided some amazingly haunting songs. Christa handles the vocals, music and lyrics; War-N handles the music writing and sound loop programming.

Being that I’ve enjoyed their music for a number of years with what scant sampling of their work that I have (all of which seems to be from Apparitions), I thought it appropriate to buy their most recent offering and give it a whirl. I like dark electronica (She Wants Revenge with a LOT more layering) … I had no reason to think that this CD would be a let-down. Think Depeche Mode meets the Sundays with their foot on the break.

To be sure, this CD is far from a let-down. Hints of some Celtic influences on “Hill.” Nods to “The Empire Strikes Back” on “The Standing Ones” (there is no way, they didn’t throw that in on purpose; it is note for note, if not right on pitch, the opening to Darth Vader’s theme), rich layering on each and every track. Even on such “stripped down” songs such as “Sunday Smiled,” where there are parts piano, cello, accordian, very light synth, and some sound sampling,

Sound sampling, drum loops, instruments, shuddering bass … and then there are Christa’s vocals, adding the icing to the richly layered cake. She uses her voice in a very subdued and emotional way, eschewing her capabilities to add to the feel and composition. Her voice has a breathy sort of quality, like you would expect from Alison Shaw of Cranes fame, except not nearly as high or child-like. There are moments, such as the end of “Simone,” where she shows that she can add a much stronger dynamic to her vocals … she just opts to keep it toned down. For the overall feel to the CD, it totally works. The melancholy she evokes blends perfectly with the atmostphere of her and War-N’s art.

Dark. Brooding. Lush. Sonic landscapes of gray and mood. This would be a great CD to listen to while driving in a PNW or east coast rain storm, or while you’re watching it out your bedroom window.

If you’re fans of dark wave and sullen electronica, I would highly recommend them.

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