Sometime you open your inbox and are instantly shocked by what you see. Increase your manhood and my boyfriend is away, come over now emails are par for the course these days, but an email written partially in Spanish briefly talking about downloading an e-album called 11 Songs Written and Recorded on a Bathtub was a bit eye catching.

The album is the work of MadreOceano – aka Argentian-born Esteban Gomez. I decided to download the album and take a shot. It was self-described as "16 singer-songwriter type of songs that get near to the new branches of indie acoustic folk. The songs were originally written for guitar and voice, but while recording melt with the lovely electric and ethereal sound of vintage instruments such as Wurlitzer, Hammond, Moog & Fender Rhodes keyboards and pianos."

The first thing that struck me was it was called 11 Songs, but had 16. But that is neither here nor there. The album is beautiful. The combination of acoustic & electric guitar (both gently strummed and finger picked) and instrumentation/sound effects and the english as a second language immediately reminded me of Mugison (these songs are more vocally dominant than Mugison's work). Esteban's use of some double tracking vocals and transitions really shows the influence of Elliott Smith.

Of course a solo acoustic album isn’t going to draw you in start to finish, but this album is well done. He avoids a lot of the repetition that plagues so many singer/songwriters and tries to add layers and instruments to help strengthen the songs. Considering Esteban is offering it for free, you’d have to think he just wanted to try this format and see how it suits him. Well it suits him well… very well.

Download the entire album here

Here are two songs for you to check out:
MP3:: She Paints – The simplicity of this finger picked riff draws you in, and the nice deep strings kick in at a perfect time to push this track along.

MP3:: Sound of Mine – I just like the sound effects in this song. I know he’s not the first to try this style, but I think it works well. His voice and the gentle riff have an antiquated feel, and the little electronic middle section helps blend the past and present.

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