Azalia Snail Celestial Respect

Azalia Snail began her musical journey as an unknown, eclectic, struggling artist. Twenty-one years later, little has changed. On her 11th LP (and first since 2006), Snail's brand of psych-tinged, left field indie rock still possesses the ability to surprise, connect and impress. Sounding a bit more world-weary and docile, Azalia's voice wafts in and out of tune, riding on a wave of held-key synth lines and cough syrup guitars. Unfortunately, songs like "Solar Riser," "Rescue Toy" and "Savings Time" sound completely transposable, as all work exclusively off the same song structure. Azalia is at her best when she manages to break the lo-fi mould: supported by the pulsating horns of "Burnt Cookies," the Disney-esque vocals of "User System" and the atmospheric, under-minute instrumental interludes of "Celestial," Star Driver" and "Respecter." On Celestial Respect, Ms. Snail confirms why, for better or worse, she's remained an underground cult figure. (Silber)