Review: Pezzettino – LubDub (2010)

Accordion whiz and lyrical spitfire Pezzettino knows what she wants and she knows how to get it. Gone are the days of girl musicians playing coy and confessional. Welcome Pezzettino, with all her brashness and oddities, to the scene.

Don’t get me wrong. I like Feist alright. St. Vincent‘s kind of cool. But even the most interesting of Pitchfork approved ladies these days have something severely lacking and what that is is weirdness. In fact, even the most lauded of female artists seem, to me, to border on “adult contemporary”. A perfect example of this is Feist’s “Brandy Alexander”. Cute girl. Beast on the guitar. But is this seriously the best she can come up with? Color me underwhelmed. And honestly, “underwhelmed” just makes my complexion look pasty.

Enter into my life Pezzettino, a high heel wearing, accordion slinging darling that offers up all the oddities that most ladies in music inexplicably missing. What differentiates Pezzettino from all the other gals is that, despite the fact that her music, at it’s core, is dance-tinged indie pop, it is all anchored by deftly executed accordion-play that recalls a less obnoxious version of The Ting Tings backed by Amelie composer Yann Tiersen.

Boring? Heck no. It’s the furthest thing from it.

From the beginning notes of “Cold Hard Chick”, Pezz makes it clear that she is not like the other girls. Backed by a swirl of synth and accordion hooks,  Pezzettino tells you exactly who she is and what she wants, living up the songs title by telling potential suitors everywhere that she “will take you for granted” and she “won’t feel bad at all”. It’s a trend that continues on a good portion of the album as the theme of Pezz’s heart of stone is discussed once more in “Only One”.

[soundcloud url=”http://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/6002383?secret_token=s-C1myE”]

When Pezzetino lets her softer side shine through, however, the album truly shines. Would I want a whole record full of Pezzetino ballads? No way, Jose! Her eccentricities are what make her and that’s a wonderful thing but no one likes a cold hard chick who has no depth.  Recently, I went through a slightly atypical relationship situation and sure, I made a mix but did it help? Not really. The fact of the matter is that all the songs on the mix sure did describe the situation, from The National’s “Slow Show” to Sara Lov’s “Animals”, but they were all songs I’d memorized and loved months – If not years – before. What I needed to ease my racing brain and aching heart was something new and after the first two upbeat tracks on LubDub, I most certainly was not expecting to find it with Pezzettino. “For You and Your Headaches” is a rare moment of the album where Pezz leaves her sass and wit behind and we see gentler, softer side of the girl.

The track opens with candor: “Can you miss someone before you have them? Because I am missing him before I have to lose him.” And just like Pezzettino, I am missing someone who isn’t missing me but rather is “missing from me”.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vh31gkskCJA&fs=1&hl=en_US]

As LubDub progresses, we find Pezzettino playing with jazzy melodies (“She Deserves”) and cheeky words (“Where’d Ya Go”) that find Pezz equal parts accordian whiz and lyrical spitfire. Pezzettino knows what she wants and she isn’t about to play coy to get it.

In a lot of ways LubDub is like another album I recently waxed poetic about on my digital pen and paper, Lightning Love’s November Birthday, if only for the fact that dang, this album is too short! But that, in reality, is the best way to play it. Always leave them wanting more.

Video and picture credit go to the lovely Mike Roeder of Play B-Sides.

Pezzettino
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Rating: 7.7/10
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