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Cigarbox Planetarium

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Album Review

Peculiar name, peculiar music. It's hard to tell if Cigarbox Planetarium's self-titled debut is downright serious about its bossa nova jams or just having fun with what they have to work with (a keyboard, guitar, drum machine, and other odd items). Titles such as "Frankenstein on the Beach" and "Trouble is My Beeswax" should hint at the latter and pay homage to their influence from surf rock. With preset rhythms (sometimes not too far off from Wesley Willis), the Washington, D.C. band bestows twangy vibrations from a vintage Fender Jazzmaster guitar, Hammond organ, and Casio keyboard, producing mood music for those who don't take mood music too seriously. It does in fact revive classic bossa nova and lounge, but with knowing winks and quirks, which hopefully won't have Stan Getz or Henry Mancini rolling in their graves. If anything, Cigarbox Planetarium deserves points just having the nerve to record something like this.


Formed: 1999 in Washington DC

Genre: Brazilian

Years Active: '00s

Formed in 1999, Cigarbox Planetarium--guitarist Andy Charneco and keyboardist Deanna Pineda--plays self-proclaimed "lounge-bossa-tiki-surf-a-nova-spaghetti-westernish-instrumental-pop." The two began doing instrumental covers such as the theme from "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly," "Telstar" by British '60s instrumental band the Tornados and several bossa nova works by Antonio...
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Cigarbox Planetarium, Cigarbox Planetarium
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