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Rebecca Pidgeon — Songs of L.A.
((Not on label) no#, 2024, CD / DL)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2024-03-03

Songs of L.A. Cover art

Around a year and a half back we reviewed Pidgeon’s previous album Parts of Speech Pieces of Sound, an album that featured an abundance of Indian and Eastern instrumentation, as well as your standard guitar, bass, keyboards, and drums, a truly enchanting collection informed by her lifelong studies of yoga and the teachings of world-renowned yogic scholar Sri Prashant Iyengar. Her latest endeavor, Songs of L.A., couldn’t be more different, embracing a more elemental alternative rock style, more edgy and aggressive as songcraft goes, sometimes hinting of the formative years of rock and roll way back when. In addition to her work as a musician, songwriter and singer, Pidgeon is also an actress, a second career that has been with her for many decades going back to Scotland, where she grew up before returning to the states around the same time she launched her solo singing career, and the overlap between music and acting has made Los Angeles a natural second home for all that she does, especially on this, her eleventh solo album. The dozen songs on the album at hand were written with her long-time writing partner David Batteau, a knowledgeable resource on the history of Holltwood and the Los Angeles area, while Pidgeon’s interests center around many of the films that have been produced in the city over the years; catchy numbers like “Everybody Learning to Fly,”  “Eyes Wide Open,” and “China Lake” have a powerful rock edge while the lyrics reflect the local flavor. Pidgeon co-produced the album with Fernando Perdomo, who produced the previous album; he also engineered the album and played bass, guitars, and keyboards, while Pidgeon played guitar, bass, keyboards, and sang; the musicians are rounded out by drummer Matt Tecu and violinist Andy Studer. The final track, “Sex Magic,” has a dark and moody feel almost like it belonged on the previous album, with its gamelan-like percussion and powerful violin moves. Songs of L.A. is definitely a change from the previous album, but shows Pidgeon’s masterful handling of that change.

Filed under: New releases, 2024 releases

Related artist(s): Fernando Perdomo, Rebecca Pidgeon

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