Local CD Revue 

The Cunted, Ether Orchestra, Our Time In Space, Dirty Birds

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THE CUNTED The Cunted

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Tighter than a pair of Baywatch swim trunks, The Cunted’s self-titled debut is eight bittersweet swan songs'and one hell of a flawless recording. Released two weeks prior to keyboardist Laquifa’s photographic vision-quest departure, it sums up a brief, albeit legendary, era of ambidextrous unicorns and super cocks. What started in jest becomes something quite magical on this well-produced album. Deceptively angelic vocals are stronger than ever, highlighting tongue-in-cheek vulgarities randy enough for Peaches. While each track deserves a spot on your iPod, guest vocalist Chopper really hits the turbo boost on “Knight Rider,” a funky nod to David Hasselhoff (and perhaps the record’s only FCC–friendly number). All good things must end, I suppose. Cross your fingers for a comeback. (MySpace.com/TheCunted)

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ETHER ORCHESTRA All Your Brave Junkies Tomorrow

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When local legends Ether added Orchestra, they changed more than semantics. The former experimental noise group fell apart, reformed and recorded a debut that creeps in like a stranger’s warm breath'eerie yet oddly familiar. Keys fall in puddles, brushes caress snares and stand-up bass strings hold together eight tracks of hypnotic garage-jazz. Languid dirges and hushed sound effects lead into a haunting, organ-driven finale that speaks volumes about the quartet’s current focus more than words ever could. (MySpace.com/EtherOrchestra)

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OUR TIME IN SPACE This Is …

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Save the King Crimson comparisons: Our Time In Space stem from a less epic branch of the prog-rock family tree. This Is … is five tracks of cosmic math jams appealing to the inner geek in all of us. While some of the chord structures are a bit tired (i.e. the simple hook on “Suenos Malos”), extended segues into layered echo-effect are downright hypnotic. Angular guitars and soothing falsetto help mix things up, peppering shoe-gazer melodies that might otherwise drag down an EP well worth your while. (MySpace.com/OurTimeInSpace)

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DIRTY BIRDS Mama’s Cafe

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Who knew cowboys loved sushi? Or committed relationships? Mama’s Cafe serves up plenty of surprises, namely a rich batch of traditional country sounds that are mercifully light on country clichés. Oh sure, there are the requisite references to jail and booze, but lead vocalist John E. tosses in plenty of refreshing narratives about white-trash warriors and culinary euphemisms for his lovely lady’s apparently dark, brown eyes. Things get a bit nauseating on “Picnic Table Girl,” but at least the sappy endearments are original (“chocolate paintbrush queen,” “secret skin,” et al). Besides, if the last barroom chorus is any indication, plenty of people crave heart-on-sleeve ditties now and then. (MySpace.com/DirtyBirdsBand)

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