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Serafina Steer - Cheap Demo Bad Science

  by Maarten Schiethart

published: 8 / 8 / 2007

Serafina Steer - Cheap Demo Bad Science
Label: Static Caravan
Format: CD


Sweet-in-sound, but foul-mouthed eccentric folk rock on debut album from London-based singer-songwriter Serafina Steer

London minstrel, or Formula 1 driver given her family name, Serafina Steer, was a student at Trinity College, although it doesn't actually mention in the press release whether she also graduated or not. Maybe it's because she tends to get off the beaten path, but Serafina claims that all the places where she recorded 'Cheap Demo, Bad Science' are due to being demolished (and whether these have included the Spitz, I'm not sure). As tranquil as the music sounds, 'Cheap Demo, Bad Science' is thoroughly 'urban'. Traditional in the sense that the tracks build on the age old folk ballad style of song, yet her sometime idiom is that of the street. Children should listen under parental guidance. I prefer the tracks where she actually sings. When her voice serves the sole purpose of narration, Serafina glides down to a Björk type of nasal mumbling in a couple of slow and quiet, introspective if you must, songs. The closing track 'Curses, Curses' even features a line about that said nose: "'My nose is made for Autumn air. Not for all this depression and I keep inflating, taking lungfuls, but they keep depressing. Curses, curses, curses ! He wants to play nurses and I want to play war." On many occasions the angelic, fairy tale like orchestration clashes wonderfully with her strong language and strong views; tormented as Serafina may seem at times, she keeps a distance and comments on her folkish miniature cabaret music life so far. 'Roundabout Horse' is a genuinely witty track, presumably recorded in the middle of a roundabout. As a debut full length release 'Cheap Demo, Bad Science' is a more than pleasant surprise. Those lucky enough to have bought her debut single 'Peach Heart' should be warned that not all other ten tracks are absolute classics. Otherwise, you should get this, if you appreciate good thoughts and cute sounds.

Track Listing:-
1 By This River
2 Uncomfortable
3 Tiger
4 Peach Heart
5 Dawn Chorus
6 Like Like A Bird On A Wire
7 Cheap Demo Bad Science
8 Roundabout Horse
9 Council Flat
10 Seven Bridge
11 Curses Curses

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Change is Good! Change is Good! (2010)
Imaginative folk pop on second album from London-based singer-songwriter Serafina Steer, who after having her trademark instrument of the harp stolen has switched with forcible effect to the synthesiser
Peach Heart (2007)

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