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Pebaluna: Carny Life

Pebaluna, Carny Life, Pebaluna album art

You see so many band profiles now that list a dozen genres in an attempt to define their particular style or sound. Los Angeles group Pebaluna makes the claim that it is an indie/folk/soul/rock band. I honestly don’t think it could be more expertly described.

I’m currently listening to the band’s new album Carny Life, released Sept.18, on AOL. Under the album cover is a small text box with “Sounds like: She and HimEmmylou Harris.” I can understand Harris, but Pebaluna blows She and Him out of the water. Frontwoman Lauren Coleman makes me think of Phoenix‘s own Ree Boado. Interestingly, both have a history of singing in church choirs. I know Boado spent three years singing with a gospel choir — the soulfulness undoubtedly rings out in her music. I feel the same connection with Coleman.

Coleman leads on every track in Carny Life, but because of the band’s ability to successfully and seamlessly change styles track to track, I never tire of her voice. The album is designed like a good meal — strong start, but not too heavy, robust in the middle, and a light finish with “Sunshine Lullaby.” (Sorry, I’ve been watching a lot of Master Chef.)

My favorite courses? “Carny Life,” the title track, “Honey,” and “Please Me.”

I find it interesting that a band named after a lost dog is so…cohesive and beautiful.

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