Best of the Year: Music

The Handsome Family

Mariza

Annual time for both celebration and wringing of hands. The latter first: There are many deserving causes whose latest offerings did not hit the review pages of the NI (guilty mentions to Nick Cave, Ani DiFranco, Oi Va Voi, Cat Power, Nina Nastasia and Erin Mckeown) just because their CDs came at the wrong time. Of those that did make it, Mariza’s Fado Curvo (EMI/Virgin, [NI 362](http://www.newint.org/issue362/mix.htm)) is a lovely pointer to the future of Portuguese music, while Victor Gama’s ambitious Odantalan.02 (Pangeiart, [NI 357](http://www.newint.org/issue357/mix.htm)) is an excavation for its roots in Africa. And Robert Wyatt’s Cuckooland (Hermana, [NI 363](http://www.newint.org/issue363/mix.htm)) was well worth the wait. But CD of the year? Singing Bones (Loose, [NI 362](http://www.newint.org/issue362/mix.htm)) by The Handsome Family. Aching vocals, country music that reverberates with the depths of its long roots and strange, strange songs.

mag cover This article is from the February 2004 issue of New Internationalist.
You can access the entire archive of over 500 issues with a digital subscription. Get a free trial now »

Subscribe   Ethical Shop