Maria Elena Silva
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Pushing past the submissive qualities of her debut, Silva captures a deep and deliberate pop-forward poignancy in her sophomore “Dulce”. Written in the wake of her relocation to Chicago, Silva contemplates…
Pushing past the submissive qualities of her debut, Silva captures a deep and deliberate pop-forward poignancy in her sophomore “Dulce”. Written in the wake of her relocation to Chicago, Silva contemplates new love, a listless fate, sobriety, and maternity all the while retaining the patience of her previous release, “Eros”. Temperate motifs aside, a freer, wilder intensity permeates “Dulce”.
Silva shows her roots in both rock n’ roll and the romantic. The fabric of the album gives palpable hints to her experimental aspirations that make borderline frantic use of the world-class instrumentalists at her disposal. This no holds barred approach results in Silva's most modern statement to date, beginning with the lead single "Love, If It Is So." A perfect avant-pop song that captures Maria in full flight with her studio band featuring the legendary guitarist Marc Ribot and percussionist Stephen Hodges - reunited for the first time since the pair were part of Tom Waits' seminal "Rain Dogs" in 1985. Ribot enhances Silva's songs with characteristic inspiration, skill, and abandon - jumping between frenzied guitar arpeggios, Philly Soul electric sitar lines, and subtle nylon string acoustic.
Longtime collaborator Scott Dean Taylor has developed a singular vocabulary when playing with Silva and dispenses all manner of obligatory drummer-isms. A sonic ascetic, he plays only what her songs require. Listen to his booming kick drum mimic the sound of a thunderclap three minutes into "Jasper." Hammond organ whiz Carey Frank fills in blanks throughout the spectrum as he trades off with Maria's down-tuned electric guitar for command of the bass frequencies and longtime Lou Reed and kd lang drummer Danny Frankel alternates with Hodges for percussion duties.
Silva’s “Dulce” is unapologetic. She brings forth higher than ever before highs, powerful whispers, and a noteworthy knack for teetering between the classical and the senseless. One minute you're hanging on every syllable of Silva's vocals and the next minute you're flying into the clouds on Ribot's guitar and the group’s rhythmic interplay.