Mia Doi Todd: Manzanita

Bob Burnett: Having previously mentioning my enthusiasm for Jimmy Tamborello's Dntel release Dumb Luck, I've begun doing digital forensic research on the guest vocalists he features. One particularly wonderful song, "Rock My Boat" highlights Mia Doi Todd's lovely singing. I searched around and discovered Mia Doi Todd's 2005 album Manzanita and its re-mix follow-up La Ninja: Amour and other dreams of Manzanita. Manzanita was Mia's fifth album; she's led an interestingly life full of Eastern studies, Yale, playing in New York City clubs, etc. and the fifth album maturity shines through nicely--as done her refined, elegant voice. I'm especially drawn to the quiet moments with simple acoustic guitar and piano--most notably is "Muscle, Blood and Bone" and is time-stopping perfect. I don't quite get going to the rock steadyish "Casa Nova" as the next cut, but that's just me. Plenty more solid material here to make up for that.

La Ninja is a nice variations on a theme of Manzanita--and as is the case with re-mix projects in general, some work and some make you move on to the next cut. It features re-mixes by "friends of Mia" such as Dntel and c60 favorite, Chessie. There are three vastly different re-mixes of the song "My Room is White" as well as three additional tracks not featured on Manzanita including an interesting version of The Beatles' "Norwegian Wood". Both are available at emusic and were released by Plug Research.

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