Mind Raft EP – Deradoorian

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By Anthony Mark Happel

22-year old Angel Deradoorian is a member of The Dirty Projectors in her day job. Here she steps out on her own for the first time with a solo EP that defies any attempt at easy classification.

She’s an apparently accomplished musician on guitar, bass and flute, but she relies mostly on her voice to put her ideas across on these songs. Her humid, lusty vocals bring the fecundity that this music needs to really succeed. Lots of bands can approximate these sounds, and do it well, but if the singer doesn’t have some special pipes, or a great vocal style, a lot of this can sound droll, but quite empty.

These songs are all respectable, but pushing them further into the unknown would enhance the stage for Angel’s voice. “Weed Jam” feels kind of like wispy post-rock, with an ambient quality to the vocals that could benefit from more amperage. “Holding Pattern” displays slightly more textured background sounds and rhythms, but it continues in the same vein as the aforementioned. “Moon” is six minutes of hazy, emerald forest, east-meets-west, post-folk.

But the real winner here is “You Carry the Deed,” a beautiful and emotive abstraction that rises well above the rest of the tracks. Angel’s vocals impel the song into the ether, well beyond what any review could properly convey. She reaches gossamer heights of ecstasy for a few seconds each time the chorus appears. This is one of the songs of the year, so far, in my book. If Angel ever decides to quit her day job she can certainly stand on her own if she can write more songs like this one.