Kelli Shay Hicks - Buck Again
Well, it's not every three-song solo acoustic EP that comes in a package with these words on it: "Recorded by Jem Cohen." But 'tis true, Ms. Hicks was recorded by the famous indie filmmaker/F.O.F. (Friend of Fugazi) in what are described on her website as "abandoned urban spaces in upstate New York." Hicks herself has also worked as a filmmaker and film preservationist at the George Eastman House in Rochester, NY, so I guess that explains it, call me Encyclopedia Brown.
Now based in Nashville, Hicks plays spare, folk-inspired music that dances around you, then sprints away before you can ask its name. Her lyrics are strange aphorisms: "Some other organ's grafted where my heart's supposed to go…Half of not's still never, so there's really no halfway." It takes some effort to focus on them, too, thanks to the ambient noise that suffuses the EP. Hicks' MySpace site features some more songs with more fleshed-out arrangements (including Hicks herself on the autoharp), and they provide an even better showcase for her oddly angled approach to songwriting. Kelli Shay Hicks