Crazy Mary, She Comes in Waves (Humsting Records) - Sorry, West Coasters. New York City continues to turn out the most interesting, challenging, experimental pop. And so it is with She Comes in Waves, in which the spirit of Arthur Lee (from Love) transports itself to NYC and makes college rock.
Crazy Mary consists of guitarist Charles Kibel, bass player George Kerezman, drummer Nic Raisz, and vocalist Sophia Jackson. Rounding out the band is Richard Morbid on guitar, vocals, and Hammond organ.
The band says they met each other while working at the Bronx Zoo - drummer Nic Raisz worked in the ape house, while Charles Kibel and Richard Morbid worked in the aviary. George Kerezman drove the Bengali express (the Zoo's monorail), and singer Sophia Jackson handled snakes.
In addition to the zoo connection, the band was plugged into NYC's alternative music scene. Bass player George Kerezman says that he roomed for awhile with M. Doughty of Soul Coughing at the east end of Spring Street. Says George, "Doughtery and I used to jam. Every time one of his albums come out, I compare the jams."
That experimental, dreamy sound comes across on "Cancer on the Photograph" and "Paris 1944," both swirling around the seductive vocals of Sophia Jackson.
She Comes in Waves was recorded during a four-day period at Coyote Studios in Brooklyn, New York. The energy shows: The title track is a sweet ditty that draws in a Lou Reed beat, while "Shock Me" is the album's strongest cut, with a smooth slice of alternative pop.
Also listen for "No Resistance," a heads-up rocker, and "Shot by Bullets," which shows influences of the old Velvet Underground.
Crazy Mary is now supporting its third release, Astronaut Doves. Yet I think She Comes in Waves is a better showcase for the band's sound.
The combo says its name is not some reference to a deranged woman. Explains Nic Raisz, "Crazy Mary is like our spiritual guide. There's a Crazy Mary in all of us."
Try a little Crazy Mary yourself.
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- Randy Krbechek © 2001