I've spent more time listening to Luluc's second album, Passerby, than any other album this year. It's a calming, seemingly effortless affair: a marriage of graceful singing and storytelling, with guitars and textures that help create an unforgettable aura.
The voice and acoustic guitar belong to Zoë Randell, while bandmate Steve Hassett contributes all the remaining sounds. Both are Australian, though these days they split their time between Melbourne and Brooklyn. I might have missed this album — as I did its 2008 predecessor — had it not been for Joe Boyd, a brilliant record producer since the 1960s and the person who brought the world Nick Drake. In 2012, Boyd asked Luluc to perform on a Nick Drake tribute tour, which makes sense: This music is true to the late singer's spirit, and then some.
- "Small Window"
- "Without A Face"
- "Reverie On Norfolk Street"
Producers: Bob Boilen, Denise DeBelius; Audio Engineer: Kevin Wait; Videographers: Denise DeBelius, Colin Marshall; Production Assistant: Maggie Starbard; photo by Sarah Tilotta/NPR