Big Blood - Big Blood & The Bleedin' Hearts LP
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"Vinylization of the seventh (I think) album by Big Blood on which they are abetted by the Bleedin' Hearts -- Tom Kovacevic and Micah Blue Smaldone (who were Caleband Colleen's bandmates in Fire On Fire) and Kelly Nesbitt (a Portland-based musician/performance artist.) Not sure if the Bleedin' Hearts ever did anything on their lonesome, but here (serving as a kind of pre-Quinnisa secret weapon) they deliver the goods. Recorded at home in South Portland Maine 'at various times through various means,' this session was originally released on CDR in 2008. For about half the album Big Blood retains its duo/'ghost quartet' profile, with the core participants generating copious gusts of the avant/rural fog that was their early trademark. Tunes range from the 'Graceless Lady' (with tense vocals recalling Nick Cave's 'Weeping Song') to the cracked Americana twangin' of 'Night Lighter.' It also includes idiosyncratic tracks, such as 'Tease It Like a Cop,' pared down to Colleen's treated vocals and piano, and a rare (and beautiful) cover tune -- Syd Barrett's 'Terrapin.' For the other (rough) half of the album, Tom, Micah and Kelly add instruments and voices that fit smoothly with everything else. But their presence provides varieties of additional sonics, veering into areas that actually resemble something like the Beatles' most fully freaked instrumental moments, crossed with the Third Ear Band's soundtrack music for Polanski's Macbeth. It's pretty incredible and 'rollicking' in a totally unorthodox way. All of which makes me think Big Blood should record an album with Van Dyke Parks. Until then, this one's about as close as we'll get to that. And if that don't get your heart beatin', then I'm not sure you have one." --Byron Coley, 2023