The 44th volume of Ball of Wax Audio Quarterly – containing only sounds originating from the mouths of humans – starts with this stark, haunting beauty by Ainara LeGardon. “Last Day” opens Ainara’s most recent album, Every Minute, which I’ve listened to enough that it’s hard to think of this song as anything but an opening track, so here we are. You will hear an impressive range of approaches on this collection, ranging from solo ballads to tight, barbershop-style harmonies, to weirdo hip-hop and mind-boggling sound collage, but we start here, with Ainara’s clear, forceful voice and enigmatic, slightly terrifying lyrics. It’s enough to raise the hairs on the back of your neck, and while it may not exactly set the tone for the next 19 tracks, it certainly sets the vocal performance bar pretty high.
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