Maquiladora - White Sands
Lotus House Records

Some bands really beg the question, "How did three people who actually
were willing to try something like this find each other?"  Maquiladora 
is about as unconventional as Britney Spears is conventional- which is 
to say it's very experimental.

The first track, "prostitute song", is a little unsettling in an airy sort of way, but features a great descending, carnival-style organ. The album progressively gets more solid and varied through "ankle" and "so far away". It later moves to haunted-house clunkiness on "termez 1936" and then jumps right to the relatively conventional "mr grey" with excellent female vocals.
This band sounds sort of like Lullaby for the Working Class might if they wandered through the house, playing whatever caught their attention- besides piano, guitar and upright bass, the members (and guests) of Maquiladora play gas pump, accordion, trap kit, harmonica, frying pan and golf ball. The singing ranges from male falsetto reminiscent of Kevin McDonald's female characters on "The Kids in the Hall" to folk-like roughness surprising on such a downbeat release.
Overall, "white sands" goes for an echoing, atmospheric sound and definitely achieves the goal. Although they do occasionally get lost in noise-absent ambience and weirdness, the album comes together nicely and doesn't get old very quickly. If Joan of Arc and Portishead were your entry drugs, but you now need something stranger to get the same fix, "white sands" might be your best bet.
...erick bieritz...

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