3 Mice — Send Me a Postcard
(Les Disques Rayés 008, 2012, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2013-05-12Although two of these mice may be Americans, Send Me a Postcard most definitely is awash in European flavors, both in the continental folk-inspired compositions and the unmistakably European instrumentation mix. 3 Mice is Dave Willey (accordion, bass, acoustic guitar etc. from Hamster Theatre, Thinking Plague), Cédric Vuille (guitar, clarinet, ukulele, Theremin etc. from L'Ensemble Rayé, Debile Menthol, Look de Bouk and solo work), and Elaine Di Falco (piano, vibraphone, accordion, vocals, etc. from Thinking Plague, Hughscore, etc.) with drummer Daniel Spahni (L'Ensemble Rayé) covering on the tracks where he is needed. The twelve songs here tend to be light, playful, and beaming with melody and joy, bearing stylistic influences from Euro-folk and classical, though assembled in a unique way that only these three musicians could do. The intuitive listener can hear the musicians' respective backgrounds (primarily L'Ensemble Rayé and Hamster Theatre) to varying degrees in each of the pieces herein, so if those two bands are of interest to you, then 3 Mice should also be. Vocals are used sparingly throughout, often wordless, but always superb and appropriate when they appear. The only mystery is why this gets lumped in with RIO; other than the fact that Willey and Di Falco are members of Thinking Plague, this is about as far away from the 'difficult listening' aspects and uber-complexity of RIO as one can get. Send Me a Postcard is a thoroughly enjoyable listen from beginning to end.
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