There are days, months, or perhaps even years when we sense a haunting presence, bothered by something that cannot be seen with our eyes or felt with our fingertips. Radiolab addresses this distressing invisible entity. Sensuous and experimental, Radiolab is an Indie duo from Frederick, Maryland. Dane Di Pierro (multi-intrumentalist / programming) joined up with vocalist Meghan Redding in early 2010. Combining elements of indie rock and electronica, and occasional samples from film, Radiolab gives new meaning to the term ‘music artist.’
‘Phantom Limbs’ is the October follow up EP to their 2010 album, “Sometimes Casual Confusion’, both released through Tunecore.
The five track set begins with pounding disbelief in “This Is a Joke.” This club friendly mix features the confident yet alluring Siouxsie-esque vocals warning, “Don’t wear anything you can’t afford to lose…everything has a price and we’re both broke.”
The title track comes in much softer and sadder, pouring out a sense of defeat. “Someone fucked you up somehow,” sings Redding, “no one else can have a chance.” Even so, she dares to ask, “Won’t you save a sliver of yourself for me?”
Radiolab delves into a playful groove while nonchalantly suggesting ways to fulfill a death wish. Halfway through, the edginess dissipates into sensuous moans whereby you can picture gloved fingertips tracing the jaw line, bared leg reaching out of sequenced slit. And all the while the tempting voice warns that she won’t be used again.
Acoustic guitar introduces the bluesy “Spider Kiss.” Slow and yearning, Redding hesitates in her desire. “I wait for you to reach me” she sings, “I wanna know you miss me. I’ve been gone for so long.” The tempo quickens, ushering in a restless array of swirling buzzes, whines, and squeals as heartache sets in and patience wanes.
Radiolab ends with a dose of funk. The bass guitar rumbles as a lab-coat voice states that “most of us here believe that brains produce consciousness. The question is, at what level?” Thoughts echo and spacey vibrations whiz throughout “All in the Mind,” portraying the disoriented cerebral chaos that can be experienced at particular intervals.
Mysterious and avant garde, Radiolab presents a range of moods and thoughts: skeptical, crestfallen, crass, restrained, and intrigued. Each song of ‘Phantom Limbs’ points to something missing: credibility, hope, authenticity, initiative, and detailed information. The ache is assessed, though there is no prescription for relieving it. Further experimentation is required, and Radiolab is welcome to conduct it.