“Marypan” is a short piano, string and xylophone instrumental that harks back to her debut album which had a swaying country feel. This track is actually very filmic and soundtrack orientated and could easily be a lead theme song for a movie. “To the Mighty One” is a more dischordant track with lots of detuned vocal layers and an old grammarphone type of recording quality. It gives it a heart and texture all of its own, almost a vintage feel. It’s a great production value that used throughout. The song is quite dramatic with its constant battle of sounds for the limited speaker space.
“Simple” is a guitar chugger in the verses and a merry-go-round in the choruses. It all sounds deliberately clumsy and floppy and becomes quite infectious with its lazy ways and half collapsed melodies. “Kitty Train” is a beautiful piano led track – again an instrumental – and showcases how moods can fly and slide by in the space of two minutes. It’s quite magical.
“The Prince of Plati” is a traditional Lisa Germano song – simple childlike melodies with small footstep lyrics of wondering and what if. Immediately accessable and a good representation of the softer side of Lisa’s work which is what this album is all about, try this track to see if you’d like the album. “A Million Times” features all kinds of rattling percussive elements over an acousitc guitar and layered vocals and is the first time any real beat is introduced to the album, and its all roughly recorded. It just sounds like you’re listening to it in a speaker via another speaker. It’s a good song and is the real pub song of the album.
“Magic Neighbour” is the title track and is a heartfelt sorrowful piano/vocal track and because it goes at a fair pace, its really quite an emotional ride and definate highlight for me, especially when towards the end some electric distortion is thrown in. “Suli-mon” is a simple short track with some helerious piano smashes that just make me giggle. The whole song has an eerie feel about it and is slightly disturbed but these piano fits an genius.
“Snow” is just blissfully beautiful and takes its time slowly building and swirling and layering and building some more to a lovingly warm ending. “Painting the Doors” is interesting with its airy guitars and keyboards and its arpeggios and open strums. It’s quite different to everything else on the album in its tones but because it shares the same production values doesn’t feel out of place. “Cocoon” ends the album with another simple song.
“Magic Neighbour” is nothing really new from Lisa Germano – what it is though is a refinement of her style and a dampening down of it. This is her most relaxed and calmest album to date, and the production sounds like a vinyl being played via a grammarphone. It’s warm, fuzzy, heartening and unnerving at the same time. That’s why we love Lisa Germano.