Arsene DeLay

00:00 April 11, 2014
By: David Vicari

Arsene DeLay's debut album, Comin' Home, starts off with a bang, as she announces her entrance into our music scene like a rock star. Part coming-out party, part coming-home album, DeLay flexes her muscles, showing off her fantastic voice and incredible range as both a singer and a bandleader. While some New Orleans musicians struggle with trying to make an album sound or feel more like New Orleans, DeLay doesn't rely on familiar tunes to tell her story. From walking down Franklin Avenue in "Chasing Dreams" to her invoking all sorts of saints, the album is a New Orleans rock album without choking the life out of what makes this city great. DeLay is unapologetic, as shown when she sings in the track "Savior Sacrifice," "I won't apologize anymore, I don't care if you dig it." She shows off her theater background when she sings "Evil Can Be Lovely" (written by Paul Sanchez), and shows her chops as a future rock star with the title track "Comin' Home" (which she wrote with Alex McMurray.) The album, which DeLay executive produced, was mastered by Mark Bingham at Piety Street Recording Studios. DeLay's band is quite impressive, as she has Bill Malchow on piano, Alex McMurray on guitar, Matt Perrine on bass, and Eric Bolivar on drums. The album also has Sam Craft (of Alexis and the Samurai fame) and Jack Craft playing violin and cello respectively, on tracks 'Saint Judas' and "Apollo." The Bonerama horns help get the party started with the horns in the opening track "Anti." Comin' Home is a great first album, the kind of album that exhibits the talent of the artist, showing that this is only the beginning of a fantastic career. The album deals with many motifs of coming back home and chasing your dreams, and you can hear her story unfold more with each listen, until she declares at the end that "Everything I Do Gonna Be Funky," giving the track a whole new meaning as she owns it perfectly. In the track "Comin' Home," a standout in an album full of highlights, she sings about feeling "the glow of the Louisiana sky, this mockingbird is going to a sugar pie." And after hearing this album, it is safe to say the city is glad that she has made it back home.

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