I have a review of If By Yes’ Salt on Sea Glass up today at Blurt.
If By Yes, the collaboration between one-woman vocal orchestra Petra Haden and Cibo Matto's Yuka Honda, sounds on the surface like bright, dreamy pop. Put on the headphones, though, and complexities emerge in unexpected chord changes, non-standard rhythms and richly layered points and counterpoints. Haden's soft, naturally sweet voice is, by turns, as accessible as radio pop, as sensually shaded as vocal jazz, as intricately arranged as doo wop, and as wild and unearthly strange as alternative vocalizers like Jarboe. She flits through Honda's subtle concoctions of funk, jazz, Latin, pop and rock like a songbird through a tropical forest, a flash of color in a steamy profusion of musical life.