Carrot Top RecordsRetsin Cover Art

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"Modest Retsin's music pops fully formed and lovely...mostly unconscious of its own beauty and apparently negligent of its power; a rich mouthful of harmony, a shivery syllable, a spark of deep blue, a brassy bleat of guitar...Retsin will not be ignored."
--Sara Manaugh, Puncture Magazine

Sweet Luck of Amaryllis marks the more than triumphant return of well-travelled folk poppers Retsin following a two and a half year recording hiatus. Their previous 2 releases on Simple Machines, '95's "Salt Lick" & '96's "Egg Fusion" established them firmly in the melodic indie rock camp & were followed up by endless touring right up through the present, including a month long acoustic jaunt with fellow musical brethren Ida this summer. The recently released, & very wonderful, Ida Retsin Family CD on Muss My Hair further cemented their sonic bonds of friendship.

Retsin is the pampered lovechild of Tara Jane O'Neil & Cynthia Nelson who were living in Louisville but now call NYC home. Both have been at the this thing for quite a while under various guises: Tara Jane as guitarist/singer/songwriter of The Sonora Pine and as bass player in Rodan & Drinking Woman (RIP), while also touring with & playing on a good chunk of Come's '96 LP "Near Life Experience", drums on parts of Sebadoh's '94 LP "Bakesale", and drums/bass on Danielle Howle's "About to Burst" Simple Machines LP; and Cynthia as the keystone in Ruby Falls, who've recorded for Silver Girl & the "Half-Cocked" soundtrack on Matador. Both acted in "Half-Cocked" but that was long ago. On "Sweet Luck", Tara Jane plays guitar, drums, keyboards & sings, while Cynthia plays guitar, flute, harmonica, keys & also sings. Helping out on this record are the considerable talents of Todd Cook, long-time Retsin bass player & full-time member of The For Carnation; drummer Greta Ritcher, who played on "Egg Fusion" & is a touring member of Retsin; & drummer Tony Bailey now of Aerial M & former Retsin touring member.

While their last effort, "Egg Fusion", appears in retrospect to be straddling a fence between melodic rock & folk-inflected pop, "Sweet Luck" lands firmly & unconditionally in the land of the latter. After enough years of soaking up old records from Maddox Brothers to Joni Mitchell, they gave birth to an absolutely gorgeous blend of mostly downtempo, sparse acoustic numbers garnished just so, with lilting flute, harmonica & small bits of wonderful effects wizardry, & mid-tempo electric tunes that hit just the right groove while remaining close cousins to their acoustic counterparts that dominate the album. "Sweet Luck of Amaryllis" is the lyrical expression of Retsin's four years of blissful existence & revels in the suspended & shimmering acoustic "newness", a genuine representation of musical concentration, maturity, poetry & love.

Read about Retsin in The Retsin Bio
Listen to some Retsin in RealAudio

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