Black Cloud is the first Davina & The Vagabonds to feature all original material but listening to the record you get the sense anything they play is going to have an air of originality to it because vocalist Davina Sowers has one of those voices that not only doesn't sound like everybody else, it really doesn't sound like anybody else.
"Bee Sting" is a lazy, stripped down little number compared to some of the other cuts on the record. The theme of the song is taking the road less traveled, which is appropriate for a band so wonderfully out of step with contemporary tastes. Sowers sings wearily over ukelele strums and light percussion and boasts an upright bass solo. Talk about the road less traveled! The imagery of the road is also appropriate because The Vagabonds are known to play 300-plus shows a year. It's a wonder they can find any road home, much less a different one each time.
It may not be the most representative track of the album but it's the one we have a video for and I've been wanting to talk more about these folks and their record for awhile. Conservative listeners probably won't understand the appeal but anyone with "big ears" and a taste for the eclectic will find a kinship with the Vagabonds' slightly modernized take on early 20th century music.
Check out the second video included here if you want to get a taste of the rest of the record. "Lipstickandchrome" was featured on NPR as their Song of the Day recently, and you can read more about the tune and stream the song on their web site as well.