Baby Blues EP
Blues | Indie Rock
adia victoria turns blues staples into a biting indictment on her epic new ‘baby blues ep’
By Nathan Leigh
November 13, 2017
Since dropping her debut single “Stuck In The South,” Aida Victoria has been captivating ears with her signature gothic take on classic blues. On her latest Baby Blues EP, Victoria pay back the blues and country luminaries that inspired her. Taking 3 songs from Robert Johnson, Victoria Spivey, and Lee Hazlewood, Adia Victoria teases out threads she brings to her own songs. Through the murk and washes of feedback, her inimitable cry breathes new life into songs that have transcended time. The band turns up the noise into an ominous gloom, giving space to chilling lines like “I’m going to beat my woman / Until I get satisfied.” Robert Johnson may have sold his soul for guitar skills, but Adia Victoria lays evil bare.
Nowhere is that more present on the album’s centerpiece, her interpretation of Victoria Spivey’s “Evil Hearted Me.” The song let’s Adia Victoria stretch her gift for storytelling; snapping in and out of focus, letting the noise arc and burst with the song. Her impressive backing band keep the songs anchored, letting melody give way to noise and back again. On “Ugly Brown,” Victoria repurposes country icon Lee Hazlewood’s song of loneliness into a biting indictment of racism in the music industry. Lines like “Nobody wants me in this town / I won’t swim in the river and that’s a fact / Cause every time I come out you’re pushing me back / And you call me Ugly Brown” carry far more weight in Adia Victoria’s voice than the white oil tycoon scion who wrote them. The song ends with one of Victoria’s original poems, shining like a beacon through the grime of droning distorted guitars. There is hope here, but you have to dig to find it.
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