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Monthly Archives: May 2015

Published May 13, 2015 on The Le Sigh

Bands like Leggy don’t grow on trees.

It’s finally officially spring and that means it’s time to pop the peach champagne and kick off your high-heeled shoes. If Leggy’s debut EP Cavity Castle is a sugar rush, their follow-up EPNice Try is a day-drinking buzz — stronger and sunnier with more bite. The Cincinnati trio of Véronique Allaer, Kerstin Bladh, and Chris Campbell have spent the year since Cavity Castlealmost constantly playing shows, whether it’s a local residency or mini tour, and it’s evident on the new EP. Allaer sings more confidently, playfully pushing and pulling the lyrics out of her mouth on “July” in a way that’s flirty, but also totally cool and intimidating, like mermaids of ancient legend (which brings the line “Caught between the devil and the deep blue sea” to a whole new level). That’s not the only time Leggy references mythology, more obviously on “Adonis,” yet the advice is relevant as ever: “Our twenties aren’t for playing safe.”

But if your Adonis, I think, or Apollo doesn’t work out, just put on “Grrls Like Us” on repeat and get drunk with your girlfriends because who else are you gonna shout, “There are plenty of fish in the sea, but girls like us don’t grow on trees” with? The infectious single combines all the best things about Leggy: a hip-shake-friendly bassline, drums you want to headbang to, and Allaer’s vocal flourishes that are irresistible to mimic on every sing-along (and there are a lot of sing-alongs because the main thing about Leggy songs is that they get stuck in your head forever). The way Allaer spits out “The future’s shining like a jar of fucking fireflies” makes me believe it’s the best Lindsay Weir line Linda Cardellini never said. John Hoffman and Jerri Queen return as co-producers for Nice Try, rounding out Leggy’s genre-spanning punk-meets-pop-meets-old school rock with a surf vibes sprinkled on top — perfect EP opener/introduction “Peach” epitomizes this. Also coming back for round two is the track “High Heeled Shoes,” this time titled “HHS 2” and given a punched up, fuzzier rework of the hazy, wandering original. Giving “HHS” a more upbeat, thus subtlety sinister, spin on Don Draper’s likely inner theme song (“I’m never coming home, I really lost my way”) showcases how much Leggy’s grown in such a short time, and they’re only going to get better. There are plenty of bands in the sea, but ones like Leggy don’t grow on trees.

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Published March 11, 2015 on The Le Sigh

Kali Uchis’ sixties-inspired Por Vida is as fresh as a beach breeze.

Kali Uchis will not put up with bullshit. Lame dudes may mistake her coy voice, retro pastel aesthetic, on point makeup and sugary tunes for a sweet pushover, but they couldn’t be more wrong. Not all of Kali Uchis’ jabs are as tough as “Ridin’ Round”‘s (“Baby, understand, I don’t need a man / Fuck me over, I’ll fuck you worse, then take off to Japan”) but the message is clear: Treat Kali Uchis less than she deserves, and she’ll realize she “should have left your ass in the friendzone,” from the self-aware “Know What I Want.” Still, her romantic side shines through on debut EP Por Vida, especially on the back-to-back smitten “Melting” and “Lottery”: “Your smile ignites just like a candlelight / Then somehow I know everything is alright.” Kali Uchis shows off her range of vocal styles on a cappella opening track “Sycamore Tree,” layering sweet, airy and cooing tones with a deep, soulful and biting hook.

Tyler, the Creator and BADBADNOTGOOD top the roster of Por Vida‘s producers, who keep Kali Uchis’ love of sixties sound as fresh as a beach breeze. A resident of LA via Virginia via Colombia, the chill West Coast influences mixed with her Latin background help create Kali Uchis’ signature tropical doo-wop sound and candy throwback look. “Rush”, produced by Kaytranada and BBNG, is the EP’s grooviest track, which simultaneously makes you want to grab a partner for a proper Latin ballroom routine and bob your head and bounce like the coolest dude in the club. Closing song “Loner” puts a baby pink bow on Por Vida‘s back-and-forth extremes of “go on and bite me” and “boy just call me” with what should be at the top of the “I’m dating myself!” playlist. Kali Uchis is tired of being treated like an “ashtray” and puts an end to a toxic relationship because that’s not what she, or anyone, deserves: “And maybe you got a full plate / Know I’m cookin’ something better.”