CD Review: The Blow “The Concussive Caress”

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The Concussive Caress”
(K Records)

This is the second release from the Blow, which is essentially Khaela Maricich and whoever else she has to help her flesh out her songs on her recordings.  The last time I saw the Blow it was just Khaela with a Mini-disk player hidden in the waistband of her skirt that she occasionally paused and un-paused. On it was a sort of sequenced soundtrack that went along with a David Lynch-esque story/monologue she was doing. It was more performance art than rock or pop music. Maybe kind of like Laurie Anderson crossed with Cat Power, but it was utterly stunning and left me feeling like I had truly broken on through for about an hour afterwards. I was kind of hoping this album would be a reproduction of what I saw that night, but let’s face it: those kinds of happenings just don’t translate well to recordings. Still, there are elements of that performance here incorporated into an incredible collection of very odd, sexy and strange songs about whatever it’s like to be in the mind of Khaela Maricich.  “The Concussive Caress” is a more than satisfying follow-up to her earlier 10″/CD on K Records, “Bonus Album.” On this album, Khaela finds herself leaning further towards her experimental side and capturing it in the loose, wild poppy kind of way that K Records is so justly celebrated for. Recommended.

Zack Wentz