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Babehoven - Nastavi, Calliope Music Album Reviews

Babehoven - Nastavi, Calliope Music Album Reviews
Singer and songwriter Maya Bon’s bedroom-pop dirges are both intimate and removed, filled with understated yet strangely meaningful detail.

Maya Bon paints quotidian misery with a palette of callbacks and namedrops. On “Crossword,” a ghostly, plinky standout from Nastavi, Calliope, her latest EP as Babehoven, she acknowledges feeling guilty for not replying to her long-absent father’s emails before noting that someone named Ella is whimpering. Two tracks later, we learn that Ella is a dog. Reveals like this, alongside specific references to the names of people in Bon’s life, make Nastavi, Calliope feel like a nesting doll of autobiographical remembrances. Subtly and unsubtly, her lyrics allude to minor tragedies that she and those around her have suffered and survived.

Even more than 2020’s Demonstrating Visible Differences of Height EP, Nastavi, Calliope’s midtempo bedroom-pop dirges sound muffled and foggy, both intimate and removed. Bon’s collaborator and co-producer Ryan Albert returns on bass, drums, and some guitar and vocals; together, they create an ideal backdrop for Bon’s diaristic lyrics, typically delivered in a mumble-sing that highlights their understated yet meaningful details. On “Orange Tree,” a song primarily focused on someone named Robin, Bon introduces another character—Joey—who gestures vaguely at some sort of shock. His story is never completed, and the loose end dangles off the song’s compressed arrangement like a frayed rope.

Bon uses specificity to sketch outlines with ample negative space. A lyrical highlight of “Orange Tree” comes in a passing mention of the once-omnipresent online game Words With Friends, which Bon uses as an excuse not to do anything else. It’s an endearingly slapdash inclusion that feels inextricable from an earlier lyric about using puzzles to avoid communicating with her father on “Crossword.” By the EP’s end, Bon’s narrator is preparing to see her dad for the first time in more than a decade. On the only upbeat tune, the dreamy “Alt. Lena,” a friend named Lena tells her that she’s brave to meet him again. Lena, Bon tells us, loves chocolate milk, sex, boobs, fire, swimming, “sipping beer on hot days.” Though she reminisces fondly about their experiences together, these surface-level qualities are all we learn about Lena herself; Bon fleshes out the character only enough to support her own story.

“Alt. Lena” is an outlier; Nastavi, Calliope more often feels resigned, even glum. “It’s hard to talk about it being a bad week/When it’s been a bad week/For a long time now,” Bon sighs on opener “Bad Week,” sounding as though her week has lasted a year at least. It’s the rare instance when her lyrics seem to speak not just to her personal sphere but to the wider world as well—evoking how, for many people, 2020 seemed to drag on indefinitely. It’s one of her few references that’s equally bleak and humorous, and Nastavi, Calliope’s cloudy rearview mirror would shine brighter with a few more laughs. But, as Bon clearly understands, these moments of levity are hard-won.
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About Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera

Hey, I'm Perera! I will try to give you technology reviews(mobile,gadgets,smart watch & other technology things), Automobiles, News and entertainment for built up your knowledge.
Babehoven - Nastavi, Calliope Music Album Reviews Babehoven - Nastavi, Calliope Music Album Reviews Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on Monday, July 19, 2021 Rating: 5

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