Poeina Suddarth - The Lost Leaf - Thursday, August 15Rumor has it Poeina Suddarth cancelled her June 27 Phoenix show because she couldn't arrange transportation to the Valley, let alone the venue. Suddarth is currently supporting Poeina on her Trains, Planes and Automobiles tour, relying on the ridesharing kindness of fans, strangers, and truckers to get her from gig to gig since her van broke down almost a year ago. It's a challenging way to go, but what's a determined singer-songwriter to do but crowd-source travel funds or, when that fails, stick out her thumb? And hitchhiking these days is not as innocent as in the 1970s. "What's in that guitar case?" passersby must speculate. "Certainly not a guitar, Mildred!"
How wrong they are -- Suddarth puts her guitar and assorted effects to good use in her wandering brand of old-time Americana-flavored, indie rock-infused, otherworldly pop. That's a lot of hyphens, but Suddarth's music is hard to define. Rich and atmospheric, haunting and raw, songs are fleshed out with unexpected (and understated) instrumental flourishes from reckless percussion, clawing banjos, jittery mandolins, floating violins and, occasionally, full-string sections. Her evocative, emotive vocals float on top--another layer providing gritty depth.
Will she make it to Phoenix this time? Show up to find out. --Glenn BurnSilver