Dakota Bones - Ø
(2013 MJMJ Records)
There's no better way that I can put it than this: the debut album by Detroit's Dakota Bones left me pleasantly befuddled. Usually, as a reviewer, I can rely on a genre tag or a label to propel me easily through a review. Not so with this tape, though. It's consistently elusive, toying with the listener. "Morning Light", which happens to be my favorite song on Ø, is a perfect example of such an instance. It opens unassumingly, yet dreamily with folky twang and short bursts of new-age shimmer that sound as if misfired. If this seems like an odd combination of instruments and auras, then you'd be right, yet all makes sense at around the two-and-a-half minute mark. The acoustic guitar is stripped away, replaced by what sounds like a tropical take on one of the songs on a Wii Sports soundtrack. The vocals are as lofty as the music is heavenly. I have no idea why, but I can't help being reminded of Men At Work's "Down Under". Weird. Check out the vibes below, courtesy of MJMJ Records.