Garage-sale she-blues troubadour Eleni Mandell sent a quiet ripple through indie circles with down-but-not-out storytelling on her 1998 DIY debut, "Wishbone."
We heard echoes of PJ Harvey and Liz Phair (as filtered through Rickie Lee Jones and Tom Waits) in Mandell's gutter-gazing musical wanderings. With the follow-up, "Thrill," these patron saints return as a reference point. But Mandell manages a slippery balancing act between conjuring songwriting's emotionally bare, noir luminaries and exuberantly crafting her own idiosyncratic take on love, life and Los Angeles from the thrift-score side of the tracks. Her biting, crisply ruminative lyrics describe a world populated by gender friction, road-weary emotional traction and the haze of cigarette smoke.
Mandell's subtle rhythmic interplay and emphasis on percussion keep such cuts as "He Thinks He's in Love" and "1970 Red Chevelle" well this side of the singer-songwriter ghetto. May we expect many unhappy returns from this angel of the low-rent district.
We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.
Email us at email@example.com.
Orlando Weekly works for you, and your support is essential.
Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Central Florida.
Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.
Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Orlando’s true free press free.