Release Date: Jan 28, 2014
Record label: Yep Roc
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Contemporary Singer/Songwriter, Alternative Pop/Rock
Something magical can happen when an artist manages to accurately capture a very defining time or era in their life. In 2010, L.A. native Eleni Mandell gave birth to twins by means of an anonymous sperm donor, dramatically changing the way she managed her career. Over the course of her previous eight albums, Mandell's songs have examined life, love, and human nature from a multitude of angles, but rarely has she sounded as focused as she is on Let's Fly a Kite.
“I just wasn’t made for these times,” famously sang Brian Wilson, but those words also perfectly apply to singer/songwriter Eleni Mandell. Her albums, from as far back as 1999’s debut, have bathed in a sumptuous not so subtle undercurrent of an earlier era, often decades ago, where her mellifluous chanteuse voice and often torchy approach to singing were the norm not the exception. For Let’s Fly a Kite, her ninth effort, a fortuitous meeting with Nick Lowe’s band and producer (Neil Brockbank) connected her already retro vibe with a group who, through Lowe’s similar approach, is fully comfortable in those surroundings.
There’s likely no situation that’s more out of sync than trying to carry on a career as a musician while also attempting to raise young children. So credit Eleni Mandell with capturing the joys of parenthood through the lens of a prolific singer/songwriter on her new album, Let’s Fly a Kite. Sung like a chanteuse and backed by label mate Nick Lowe’s crack band — Geraint Watkins (keyboards), Matt Radford (bass), Robert Trehern (drums), Martin Winning (wind instruments) – as well as Los Straitjackets’ Greg Townson on guitar and with Lowe’s producer Neil Brockbank behind the boards, it captures an aura of domestic bliss through songs that are unfailingly effervescent and jazz infused to the max.