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Pity Party

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Album Review

Although Pity Party is only Mas Rapido!'s second album, the duo have been an integral part of the Parasol Records lineup from its earliest days: the duo of guitarist Donna Esposito and bassist Frank Bednash (both sing, usually on alternate songs) were originally known as Cowboy & Spingirl, and more recently, they released a pair of albums as Toothpaste 2000. So Mas Rapido! makes their third lousy and incomprehensible band name in a row, which may well be some sort of record. Pity about the name, particularly since Pity Party is easily the duo's most consistently listenable album. Kicking off with the sterling "Emily Lloyd," a playful tribute to the British actress and her film Breaking the Waves set to a twangy power pop tune, Pity Party has greater melodic heft and richer arrangements than most of their earlier albums. However, Mas Rapido! have the same fundamental problem that afflicted both Cowboy & Spingirl and Toothpaste 2000: Esposito is simply a much better singer than Bednash, with an absolutely terrific voice that easily swings from the hazy neo-psych melodrama of the title track to the one-woman girl group harmonies of the Blondie-like "Headcase" to the strummy-strummy twee indie pop of "Believe It." Bednash's showcases are better than ever before, but his anodyne voice and fondness for catchy but colorless power pop is still consistently less interesting than Esposito's more varied and appealing tunes.


Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

Mas Rapido! is one of the many aliases of guitarist and vocalist Donna Esposito (formerly with the Cyclones) and bassist and vocalist Frank Bednash (ex-Riff Doctors), a duo with a knack for energetic power pop, stellar songcraft, and a habit of changing their collaborative name (and their drummers) on a regular basis. New Yorker Esposito and North Carolina native Bednash began making music together in 1983, releasing a single as Cowboy and Spingirl (the name came from in item on a Chinese restaurant...
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Pity Party, Mas Rapido!
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