Boomkat Product Review:
The smoke and honey-infused voice and cello of Guatemala’s Mabe Fratti seduce once again, following her input to the Titanic project with a more subtly effusive, sanguine appeal as part of Phét Phét Phét - RIYL Jim O’Rourke, Tara Clerkin Trio, Stereolab, Vicente Atria, Elaine Howley, The High Llamas.
Working again with Titanic’s I. La Catolica, and accompanied by guest Susan Alcorn (of Black Truffle fame) on pedal steel guitar, plus Marc Miller on guitar, and calming cat’s cradle of woodwind, synth and organ from Jarrett Gilmore, Fratti fronts a sublime EP recorded in the bosom of Mexico City, sounding like an antidote to the frenetic megatropolis, or any type of stress, for that matter.
Despite this being their first record together, ’Shimmer’ ushers Phét Phét Phét’s gently iridescent instrumental backdrops with the suss of a high class Tokyo hotel’s in-house lounge jazz band who’ve been at it for years, and now only subtly move from the background to the fore, snagging us on the tentative downbeat optimism of ‘Half Glass’, with its dusted shuffle undermining spoken word and harmonised vox, before dimming the lights to the blushing harmonies and cutlery tinkle drums of its title song, and tugging wistfully on the sleeve with ‘Windpocket People’, and beckoning to the late night disco on a grooving beauty redolent of Stereolab in ‘Se Siente Como’.
However, the 20 minute B-side ‘You are the Eyes of the World’ is where they really come into their own, holding to a sublime sense of deferred gratification with a haze of mouth-watering drone that lingers on the air like cigar smoke and peaty whiskey notes, elements of woodwind and electric guitar criss-crossing the scene and fluffing the bedding for Fratti’s lilting, lullaby-like coos to see us off.