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ALBUM REVIEW: "Living Dead"

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Amanda Ashley Trio

"Living Dead"

Self-released

amandaashleymusic.com

I found this album a little misleading at first. With its campy B-movie cover art and spooky intro, it came off as something for The Cramps fan in us all. But the Amanda Ashley Trio's "Living Dead" runs a bit deeper than that. At the center of the affair is Ashley's voice: a contralto warble that gets under your skin and in your blood.

As is the custom with so many contemporary recording artists, "Living Dead" is an EP — eight songs of percussive variety with Ashley stepping out from behind the 88s a bit to chop a steady groove on the guitar. The songwriting is eight loping and free slices of acoustic-based modern rock that moves like funk without actually being funk. Standout tracks like the bosa boogied "Glowing" and the DMB-inspired title track carry this overall well-put-together record, even though I was expecting something to scare me or steal my soul.

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