SummaryGift for the End, Mariee Sioux's new album, draws its benevolent psychedelia on the native folk roots: a canyon crisscrossed by paths leading Joni Mitchell's, Neil Young's and Bonnie Prince Billy's souls into a deep world music, mystical and ancestral, either from America or from elsewhere.
Since the release of her debut album Faces in the Rocks, the young californian girl from Nevada City toured a lot - sometimes with her homie Alela Diane or Hope Sandoval (Mazzy Star) -, in the US and in Europe, she also participated in tribute albums to The Cure (Perfect as Cat, released on Manimal Vinyl Records) and to Graham Nash (Be Yourself on Grass Roots Records/Coop) and recorded several tracks in duo with Will Oldham (Bonnie Prince Billy) to be released this year.
Gift for the End was recorded between April 2010 and August 2011 in Placerville's Moonsoon Studios and in the Nevada City's Sun Dial studios. Mariee Sioux added intricate melodies to her traditional guitar picking, combining the most classical and the less conventional instruments, allowing herself a wider personal and emotional exploration. As compared to Faces in the Rocks's consistency and uniformity, Gift for the End offers a large variety of sounds, universes and themes, the one about native Americans, as symbolized by traditional flutes, being more discreet.
The guest musicians are familiar and necessary, Sean Kae's arrangements and production sometimes treat the traditional folk instruments in a hallucinogenic way: a subtle carpet of percussions, vocal harmonies, ghostly sounds features allowing to link the tracks together and to weld them into a single block of different crystals electric americana riffs (« Tule »), delicate strokes of Wurlitzer (« Icarus Eye »), classical piano tracks (« Old Magic »), new age analogic landscapes (« White Fanged Foreverness »), country western atmosphere (« Twin Song »), or English psyche folk (« Homeopathic », « Ghost in my Heart »).
Gift for the End is a mineral album. It also brings to mind Enya, Linda Perhacs, Townes Van Zandt, Cocteau Twins, Kate Bush, Neutral Milk Hotel, The Pentangle, Jackson Browne...