Dunce Witch Snowman

Eamon Ra

Independent release, 2023


REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen


My introduction to Seattle's Eamon Nordquist, aka, Eamon Ra, was 2020’s Meat Bones Chemicals Electricity. The multi-instrumentalist impressed me with his ’60s-friendly version of rock, and his sophomore effort Dunce Witch Snowmanmy_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 leaves an equally indelible mark thanks to his “psychedelic power pop heavy folk rock” formula.

The thumping retro-energy of “Up And At ’Em” gets the listen off to a warm and harmonic start that comes with a dance floor energy thanks to Jeff Curtis Brown’s thumping drums. “Happiest Day Gone Astray” follows and takes a turn into calmer areas via Ra’s graceful piano and strong attention to mood, but things abruptly shift with the thick title track. On this song with plenty of mystery, Allison Agostinelli’s backing vocals and Brown’s playful percussion won’t go unnoticed, either.

Further along, the indeed blues tinted “Quarantine Blues” illustrates Ra’s vocal range amid the psychedelic swells, but it's the intimate and soothing “Have You Seen Emma?” that will appeal to those who like the softer side of nostalgic rock, where Evan Schiller pulls up a seat for the drum kit.

Deeper yet, A. Michael Collins is present on drums for the dreamy and eloquent “On Holiday,” while the folk friendly “Butterflies And Bees” will make you forget all the strife in the world and just focus on the beauty of nature. The aptly titled “See You Later” exits the listen and finds plenty of grooves to reside in, and it sure benefits from Tim Meinig's proficient drumming, too.

Ra plays mellotron, bass, guitar, percussion, piano and sings throughout. Each song carries its own distinct identity, though you might hear similarities to Paul Weller, Robyn Hitchcock, or Mary Timony, and you certainly won’t hear me complain about that or this creative and throwback version of rock and pop.

Rating: B+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



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