In Rotation: Thao & Mirah's 'Thao & Mirah'
A series in Sunday Calendar about what Times writers & contributors are listening to right now...
It’s been a great year for fans of the female voice within the many strands of pop music: Artists including Tuneyards, Adele, PJ Harvey, Ellie Goulding, Lucinda Williams, Jessica Lea Mayfield and Anna Calvi have released adventurous, career-defining full-lengths already in 2011, and upcoming work by Mia Doi Todd and Ximena Sariñana will only add to the bounty.
Let’s not forget two singers who have combined to create the utterly beguiling “Thao & Mirah”: Thao Nguyen and Mirah Yom Tov Zeitlyn. The former usually works with her band the Get Down Stay Down to craft hummable, enigmatic guitar-pop; the latter, as Mirah, makes a more rhythmic, electronic brand of folk. Here, with producer-collaborator Merrill Garbus, a.k.a. Tuneyards, as the thread, the two have meshed perfectly. Thao’s fluffy, singsong voice works well in tandem with Mirah’s more driving tone, and combined with many instrumental textures and lots of keyboard flourish, “Thao & Mirah” is a testament to the collaborative spirit.
Thao & Mirah
“Thao & Mirah”
(Kill Rock Stars)
— Randall Roberts