Music Around Town

EMA

When: Sun., March 11 2012

Erika M. Anderson made her mark last year with the opening line of her excellent single “California”: “Fuck you, California, you made me boring,” she sings over a low-fi hum that sounds like it just might lift off, if only it could gather a little speed for the attempt. The song anchors Past Life Martyred Saints, the equally terrific debut album by Anderson, who records as EMA. The South Dakota native layers acoustic guitars over vaguely hip-hop beats and electronic jetsam on top of alt-rock melodies, venturing into an open playground of sounds on Past Life Martyred Saints: noise rock, indie, electronic, and even some type of folk-drone hybrid we really don't have a name for. It's a remarkable achievement for a woman pushing 30 who used to front a ramshackle noise-rock duo with her former boyfriend. Solo and freed from any sort of restraints her past may have placed on her, EMA slips into a sonic vortex on Past Life Martyred Saints, surfacing often but not for long. Excavating things happening just below the surface, as well as grabbing at those floating above it, she crafted one of 2011's best LPs, a personal, scarred recollection of a past that's given way to a bright future. With Nü Sensae and Outer Space. 8:30 p.m. Tickets: $10. – Michael Gallucci

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