Living in the minimal world

Natasha Jacobs sings in that affected, dramatic style preferred by a number of avant-folk types. Except that she's leading a minimalist rock band. So, y'know, heavy VU-esque stuff with acrobatic and occasionally ethereal vocals powering the process.

(Tiny Engines)

I've been listening to this for a few weeks, and I really can't get it out of my head. Most of the time, this kind of stuff drives me batty. I'm not a flights of fancy kind of guy, but the combination of Jacobs' vocal wanderings and the spare power of her band is immediately arresting.

There's plenty of staying power, too. As I said up top, I have been unable to shake this album. And I've tried. Oh man, have I tried. But I finally gave in. The combination of ideas here is unique and powerful. The songs are intricate, playful and intense. And, well, pretty great.

It's my job as a critic to explain why I like (or don't like) something. My opinion is irrelevant. The reasons for that opinion are what matter. I say all that as an explanation as to why it has taken me so long to write about Thelma. I liked this from the start. I just didn't know why. And I'm still not sure, but I think I'm getting on the right track. Thelma has been there for some time. Bravo!

Jon Worley

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