The Log Ladies sprung up from the fertile soil of New Orleans’ improvisational/creative music scene (à la Blue Nile’s Open Ears Series). Comprised of guitarist Chris Alford, bassist Jesse Morrow, and drummer/poet Dave Cappello, the Log Ladies explore a wide variety of musical terrain on their debut album, Let’s Build a Myth Together, and succeed in producing one of the most unique albums to come out of New Orleans in recent memory.
In the spirit of David Lynch (who’s TV series Twin Peaks is referenced by the band’s name), the Log Ladies achieve an ethereal state with their music which is often foiled by moments of chaos, poignancy and humor. The album bounces back and forth between scripted compositions and free-time sonic exploration. There are a number of interesting compositions throughout, such as the angular “Squirmer,” the slinking “Albatross,” and the airy “Dejima,” which has echoes of Pat Metheny’s ECM recordings. But when the band stretches outside of these forms it blurs the line between composition and improvisation, pushing musical boundaries while remaining natural, tasteful and, above all, a joy to listen to.
The inclusion of Cappello’s poetry on two tracks adds another positive dimension to Let’s Build a Myth Together. “Kissing Poems” captures the languid beauty of New Orleans summertime while “Herbert Huncke” is a funny and cleverly written ode to a man burnt-out on the New York City art scene.
The Log Ladies cover a lot of ground on the hour-long Let’s Build a Myth Together, a lot to digest but well worth the effort.