CD Review: Beth Jeans Houghton and the Hooves of Destiny

(amazon.com)

Beth Jeans Houghton and the Hooves of Destiny
Yours Truly, Cellophane Nose
Mute
By David Chiu

This latest album from this British newcomer may be the most unorthodox sounding and unpredictable release so far this year—and that’s what makes it so interesting on an artistic level. Verging between ornate pop and chugging rock, Yours Truly, Cellophane Nose seems to come from another world—one can’t really pigeonhole a category that best suits this group’s music. One thing is certain, though, is the musical maturity of this 21-year-old, whose vocals can be likened to a combination of Annie Lennox, Sarah McLachlan and Joni Mitchell—lush and expressive. “Sweet Tooth Bird” opens the record with regal pomp rock while “Nightswimmer” is an eccentric if charming track. Some of the unique aspects of the record can be found on tracks like “Atlas” that features a shift in tempo between pummeling rock and cool bossa nova-like jazz; or the hidden punkish track that immediately follows the very classical-influenced “Carousel.” The album’s sense of whimsy in the instrumentation and lyrics gives the music its distinct character. Perhaps because it seems different from conventional pop/rock is what makes Houghton and Co.’s music arresting

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