20 Watts

Editor’s Picks #63: Zac Condon Does Mexico by caitlindewey
February 19, 2009, 2:05 am
Filed under: Editor Picks | Tags: , , , ,

For those of you who thought Zac Condon couldn’t get any more random, the poster boy of indie folk noir just pulled a couple more tricks from his tailored sleeve – like a Mexican funeral band and an alter-ego, for starters.

Condon’s [aka Beirut’s, aka Realpeople’s] latest EP, “March of the Zapotec/Holland,” is a scizophrenic wonder in two distinct parts.

On disk one, “March of the Zapotec,” Condon busts out a 19-piece Oaxacan funeral band for five warm, brassy, panoramic tracks.  The sound is best described by its musician’s ratios: one part quavering, Condonic gypsy waltzes, and 19 parts straight-up Mexicana.

Disk two, “Holland,” veers into totally different territory: think baritone vocals bubbling over layers of Magnetic-Fields-esque electronica and ’80s synth-pop.

The whole concept sounds crazy — a little comical, even.  But serious props are owed to Zac Condon… only he/Beirut/Realpeople could make so many gimmicks so memorable!

– Caitlin Dewey, front-of-book editor

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