A brief, five-tracks-in-ten-minutes EP, Detail From The Mountain Side is Azita’s score to a play of the same name, penned by Chicago playwright Brian Torrey Scott – during the play itself, these songs are sung by cast members, rather than the striking, singular talent of Azita Youssefi.
The compositional structures are kept simple, in keeping with many musicals – they’re light and airy, almost as far from challenging as a Westlife number one – and the lyrics (written by Torrey Scott) are both ambiguous and precise – by that, assume that nothing’s ever quite so matter-of-fact as it initially seems. Although sung solely by Youssefi, backed by musicians from Chicago, they play out like dramatic pieces, conversations betweens parties warring or celebrating; ‘Tangly’, for example, features no fewer than four different characters. Perhaps, anyway: with context shifted, it’s tough, nigh on impossible, to gauge how these songs operate within the play for which they were composed. Thus, Details From The Mountain Side can’t be wholly, accurately judged, critically; one should see the play to assess these songs correctly.
As a standalone record, then, Azita’s latest is likely to be of little interest to anyone but the most fervent of existing fan. A third full-length proper is in the works too, though, so casual acquaintances may wish to wait until that’s released before rekindling relations with Youssefi and her skewed pop creations.
5Mike Diver's Score