There's rhythm guitar and then there's rhythm guitar. Think of it as wood and strings becoming a pulsing percussive dance floor. The chords jar and push at you but you never lose that insistent pulse. This is the music that lives in Eileen Cuba. And it's not folk, it's not punk, it's not rock. It's all of these backed up against each other so tightly you can't find the edges.
Originally from Florida, she has performed both as a solo act and with bands that opened for acts as diverse as Greg Brown and the Tannahill Weavers. She made the diagonal migration from there to Seattle drawn by the mountains and the blooming wild variety of Seattle's music scene. After working the local coffeehouses solo she teamed up with guitarist Doug Hayman to form the band "Baby Henry". Hayman's ethereal guitar work merged with Cuba's complex rhythms and melodies to create a totally unique sound. Alicia Healey joined them on bass and vocals and coaxed Eileen into the studio, producing and engineering Eileen's 2003 EP "If".
With the 2007 summer release of her second CD, "Simple Geometry", Eileen's music is sinking more solidly into the alternative folk/rock music genre, taking advantage of drums and bass to give her rhythms and chordal melodies the background they have always yearned for. Produced and engineered by Johnny Sangster, the album features her collaboration with the very talented Peter Langston. Other musicians include Alicia Healey, Mark Pickerel, Jim Sangster, Johnny Sangster, and Paul Elliott.
What others are saying...
"Eileen's fearlessly distilled lyrics and exhilarating guitar find a jungle of sounds with Peter Langston. Sudden turns, musical adventure, not for the timid. Advanced ears take note, this is a cd worth a real listening date, embraced by excellent headphones, lyric booklet propped open, hungry for all the nuances. Enjoy the feast!!!"
long-time fan Kristina Olsen, (and international touring musician)
"Wow, double wow, triple wow. It's a beautiful piece of art. The musicianship, the singing, the bvox, the words, all of it."
Linda Waterfall, Seattle singer/songwriter, composer, producer
"What is Eileen's Cuba's Simple Geometry? A) Rock and Roll. B) Folk C) Beatific Underworld Rhythm and Blues D) All of the Above The answer is D). But to get a little more descriptive... Start with Eileen's guitar chord progressions. No more like Trigometric patterns. Then add vocals and lyrics as if Joni Mitchell had emerged out of late 70s Punk rather than 60s Folk and then took 30 years off to study Soul Physics in another galaxy and returned with a microscope in one eye and a telescope in the other and subterranean homesick messages of the heart, and accompanied by a band of other worldly heroes who had absorbed all there is to know of Chuck Berry, X, Nirvana, The Ronettes, psychedelic jug music, and angelic choirs. With Peter Langston firing as many stringed weapons he could get his hands on and producer Johnny Sangster shooting pop-rockets into unlikely places in the sub-atomic mix, this is an album that you might not know that you want, but it is what you need."
"Cuba’s songs play like beautiful indie film dreamscapes. Simple Geometry is a kaleidoscope of ferocious desire, fragile pain, simple joy, and some delicious trips to the edge. The colors and shapes rearrange incredibly between cuts. Langston’s bold guitar work is a terrific addition to Cuba’s rhythms, adding depth and a just right, off-kilter David Byrne sensibility. My favorites: New Math, Blue Bird, Too Close, Touchtaptwisttremble, and Frozen; which never ceases to make me cry. And you gotta love a line like: "I close my eyes when I drive, but only at night, and only on 5" (Truth or Dare). The songs get deeper with every listen, so listen closely and repeatedly, and be prepared to experience life through Cuba’s fearless, wide open senses."
Lee, CD Baby