Songstress Lisa Germano has a clear penchant for the gothic. Morbid album cover? Check. Eerily-titled album tracks? Check. A haunting falsetto? Check. But how dark is too dark? How far is too far? On No Elephants, Germano goes deepâ€”but does she escape?
Germano opens her disc ominously on â€œRuminants,â€ with sounds of birds cawing and feathers fluttering. Distorted keys enter the picture, giving the track an immediate, carnivalesque feeling. Germano, though, holds out: Her breathy, feathery, falsetto of a voice doesnâ€™t chime in until the one-minute mark. It seems a little too late, and gives the disc a timid, dream-state of a start.
Her second effortâ€”the albumâ€™s title trackâ€”follows that same sleepy path. Germanoâ€™s voice is garbled and distant, a ghost, and the piano, her backbone.
Thatâ€™s a telling trait, and one that follows No Elephants to its end. From the aptly-titled â€œApathy and the Devilâ€ and â€œHauntedâ€ to the barely-there, nearly-instrumental â€œBack to Earthâ€ and â€œStrange Bird,â€ Germano often stumbles and stutters through her self-made depths.
â€œDiamondsâ€ and â€œâ€¦And So Onâ€ showcase the talent she so often hidesâ€”and one thing is clear: Itâ€™s time for Germano to find her light.
No Elephants is available on Badman Recording Co. on February 12.