Hurray for the Riff Raff are a new signing for Loose Music and the labels quality control has scored another bulls-eye with the release of the self titled album from the New Orleans based Americana trio, now I know that the term Americana gets thrown around a lot and it appears in some media to be getting diluted downward to a more polished and commercial product, but this album is the real deal collecting together eleven tracks from the bands two previously self released albums, a perfect introduction if you’ve not come across the band before.
Front woman Alynda Lee Segarra has a colourful background, a Puerto Rican, brought up in The Bronx in a Irish neighborhood who gravitated to the Lower East Side before dropping out of school at seventeen and hopping trains from town to town, she eventually arrived in New Orleans and took up playing the washboard for a street band called the Dead Man’s Street Orchestra , before moving on to the playing banjo and eventually forming Hurray for the Riff Raff to satisfy her muse (more from Alynda at eMusic).
So with the groups authenticity confirmed we move to the music, a hotchpotch of folk, scratchy, vintage and moody the album kicks of with a piano instrumental – unusual yes but it’s a tasty hors d’œuvre that sets the album up to serve up a hearty feast for the ears. Alynda has the perfect vocal to accompany the songs possessing a world weary timbre, a little ethereal with a rural purity – which is not bad for a city girl who’s only clocked up 24 years. Banjo, guitar, accordion, piano and horns frame the songs beautifully, all-in-all a gem of an album.
More music from Hurray for the Riff Raff at Daytrotter
Photo Essay featuring Dead Man’s Street Orchestra at Time
Buy at Loose Music
Bonus track (Dylan cover)