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Arto Lindsay – Cuidado Madame

Ponderosa (Europe) / Northern Spy (USA)

Arto Lindsay - Cuidado MadameA culmination of a thirteen-year itch to get back to business, Cuidado Madame cuts into some of the sweetness of previous outings to revel in skittish twists of modernity. Percussive off-centres pivoting round the African rhythms of candomblé and the taut recoil of the Afro-Brazilian hand drum, the atabaque, a ubiquitous (sometimes brittle) machine-fed perkiness falling through sparking guitar, gliding organ and stabby mottlings of piano. Arto Lindsay‘s distinctive lover-man smooch is always at its core, molten with oddball sensuality and slanted references that circle your skull with the wishfully glow of warmer climes.

Cuidado Madame is a rewarding listen, digitally scribbled and samba swirling. Easy listening inclinations are mithered by tasty obliques and whirring undercuts. The pattering Tupperware and keytoned counter-attacks sometimes finding a curious Liberace glimmer, even a touch of Ambitious Lovers‘ slap-badassery.

Its ruffled contours bowl you over; then Arto lets his guitar rip and it’s a savage breath of fresh air, asphyxiating in grasps of amputated vocals that straddle a fine line between orgasmic and disturbing. A brilliant manoeuvre that lets a little more chaos into the mix; “Uncrossed”‘s prickly pears of processing noisily mingling with those loose jivers of fret. “Unpair”‘s tight tribal wares and gliding Hammond smashed into a surprise mangle of guitar and barmy ballroom incidentals, leaving “Pele De Perto” to Gainsbourg your senses with a little Russian crooning to a gentle tip-toe from the old Joanna.

Another high point from Arto and company that does more than serenade sweetly in your ear.

-Michael Rodham-Heaps-

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