Builder of the House - Ornaments

Both Elliot Heeschen and Rob Cimitile, who comprise the folk-ish duo Builder of the House, played in the Zimbabwean marimba band, which is not the usual breeding ground for most folk acts. Therefore, Ornaments, the pair's album, has a musical sophistication beyond, perhaps, your usual sonic expectations.

There is a brooding groove, for instance, on "Look at the Man," which - with a little more instrumental amplification - might make for an intriguing alternative rock track. Something special always seems to happen whenever strong songwriters (like Heeschen and Cimitile) mix their craft with world music sensibilities. After all, it wasn't all that long ago that Paul Simon took his New York state of mind to Africa, and returned with Graceland, which may still be his best album to date.

Just listen to the drum and bass groove supporting "Evergreen." It's a delightful mix that certainly is not your parents' (or would that be grandparents'?) folk music. The track features a chanted, wordless vocal that gives the song extra exotic vibes.

Although it would be a stretch to call this act builders of a funhouse, there is nevertheless more fun to be found within these grooves than one might at first assume. And this is a very good thing.

Builder of the House - Ornaments

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