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Hurray For The Riff Raff|LIFE ON EARTH

LIFE ON EARTH

Hurray For The Riff Raff

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After a lifetime of running—away from their Bronx home as a teenager, for freight trains to travel the country, from New Orleans to Nashville and back to NYC—Alynda Segarra (aka, the force behind Hurray for the Riff Raff) was forced to sit still and look around when the pandemic all but stopped the world for a while. "Not being able to travel and get out whenever, I felt nervous energy inside me ... it taught me a lot about trauma and memories being stored in the body," they said. So Segarra began running, as in jogging, to get out the energy—but also sorting through the past and figuring out how to live with it, and thrive. Nowhere is that clearer than on "SAGA," a bittersweet, Velvet Underground-like jangle inspired by Christine Blasey Ford's sexual-assault accusations against then-Supreme Court Justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh, and how that led to a resurfacing of Segarra's own painful memories. "I don't want this to be the saga of my life … push it out of my mind," they rebel against a hopeful wall of horns, kittycat-cute backing vocals contrasting the chant of "Nobody believed me." (Their voice often recalls the power and silk of Annie Lennox.) You can feel Segarra's racing pulse in "PIERCED ARROWS" and a more measured pace in "WOLVES," with its mix of chilled synth, tribal drums and '80-style gospel backing vocals. It feels like a lost Yeah Yeah Yeahs song, and that's a good thing. "ROSEMARY TEARS" sounds sacred and holy, and "nightqueen" is atmospheric, the drums slowly floating in as if to pierce its bubble of keening synth. "RHODODENDRON" is great, as Segarra coos pretty plant names and makes them sound like a roll call of danger—"Rhododendron/ Night blooming jasmine/ Deadly nightshade/ Fox glove … " It bounces along like a joy-riding car without shocks, then settles into a groove just as the singer switches gears to wail their plea of a chorus: "Don't turn your back on the mainland!" It's a reference to their Puerto Rican heritage, and Segarra has said it's about admitting to the "colonizer inside us all." Finally, "PRECIOUS CARGO" is a stunner, Segarra's sing-song spoken word like documentary journalism as they speak in the voice of real-life ICE detainees. "Me swimming just to get across/ With the babies on my shoulders ... Made it through the jungle/ No water there for two weeks," the story goes, detailing the hardships of being captured while seeking asylum: split from their families, sleeping on the cold floor "like a dog." Segarra helped the men work with lawyers to win their freedom but stresses that just being free in the US does not guarantee a functioning, human system. © Shelly Ridenour/Qobuz

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LIFE ON EARTH

Hurray For The Riff Raff

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1
WOLVES
00:03:36

Emily Lazar, MasteringEngineer - Alli Rogers, AdditionalEngineer - Brad Cook, Producer, Bass Guitar, Electric Guitar, Background Vocals, Drum Programmer, Synthesizer, RecordingEngineer - Hurray For The Riff Raff, MainArtist - Adam McDaniel, RecordingEngineer - Chris Allgood, MasteringEngineer - Jonathan Low, MixingEngineer - Alex Farrar, AdditionalEngineer - Alynda Segarra, Banjo, Lead Vocals, Writer, Synthesizer

© 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

2
PIERCED ARROWS Explicit
00:04:02

Emily Lazar, MasteringEngineer - Alli Rogers, AdditionalEngineer - Brad Cook, Producer, Electric Guitar, Synthesizer, RecordingEngineer - Hurray For The Riff Raff, MainArtist - Matt McCaughan, Drums, Drum Programmer - Adam McDaniel, RecordingEngineer - Chris Allgood, MasteringEngineer - Jonathan Low, MixingEngineer - Kellen Harrison, Writer, Additional Synthesizer - Alex Farrar, AdditionalEngineer - Alynda Segarra, Electric Guitar, Vocals, Writer, Synthesizer - Brevan Hampton, Bongo Drums

© 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

3
POINTED AT THE SUN
00:03:32

Emily Lazar, MasteringEngineer - Alli Rogers, AdditionalEngineer - Brad Cook, Producer, Electric Guitar, Organ, Bass, RecordingEngineer - Hurray For The Riff Raff, MainArtist - Matt McCaughan, Drums - Adam McDaniel, RecordingEngineer - Chris Allgood, MasteringEngineer - Jonathan Low, MixingEngineer - Alex Farrar, AdditionalEngineer - Alynda Segarra, Electric Guitar, Vocals, Writer

© 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

4
RHODODENDRON
00:03:34

Jim James, Writer - Emily Lazar, MasteringEngineer - Alli Rogers, AdditionalEngineer - Brad Cook, Producer, Acoustic Guitar, Bass Guitar, Synthesizer, RecordingEngineer - Hurray For The Riff Raff, MainArtist - Matt McCaughan, Drums - Adam McDaniel, RecordingEngineer - Phil Cook, Organ - Chris Allgood, MasteringEngineer - Jonathan Low, MixingEngineer - Alex Farrar, AdditionalEngineer - Alynda Segarra, Vocals, Writer

© 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

5
JUPITER'S DANCE
00:02:35

Emily Lazar, MasteringEngineer - Alli Rogers, AdditionalEngineer - Brad Cook, Producer, Keyboards, Bass, Synthesizer, RecordingEngineer - Hurray For The Riff Raff, MainArtist - Adam McDaniel, RecordingEngineer - Phil Cook, Piano - Chris Allgood, MasteringEngineer - Jonathan Low, MixingEngineer - Alex Farrar, AdditionalEngineer - Alynda Segarra, Vocals, Writer, Drum Loops, Thumb Piano - Brevan Hampton, Triangle

© 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

6
LIFE ON EARTH
00:05:46

Emily Lazar, MasteringEngineer - Alli Rogers, AdditionalEngineer - Brad Cook, Producer, Synthesizer, RecordingEngineer - Hurray For The Riff Raff, MainArtist - Alexandra Sauser-Monnig, Background Vocals - Matt McCaughan, Additional Sounds - Adam McDaniel, Additional Synthesizer, RecordingEngineer - Phil Cook, Organ, Piano - Chris Allgood, MasteringEngineer - Jonathan Low, MixingEngineer - Alex Farrar, AdditionalEngineer - Alynda Segarra, Lead Vocals, Writer - Matt Douglas, Clarinet, Saxophone - Al Strong, Trumpet - Evan Ringel, Trombone

© 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

7
nightqueen (feat. Ocean Vuong)
00:03:38

Emily Lazar, MasteringEngineer - Alli Rogers, AdditionalEngineer - Brad Cook, Producer, Keyboards, Bass, Synthesizer, RecordingEngineer - Hurray For The Riff Raff, MainArtist - Matt McCaughan, Drums - Adam McDaniel, Synthesizer, RecordingEngineer - Phil Cook, Keyboards - Chris Allgood, MasteringEngineer - Jonathan Low, MixingEngineer - Alex Farrar, AdditionalEngineer - Alynda Segarra, Vocals, Writer - Matt Douglas, Saxophone - Ocean Vuong, FeaturedArtist, Spoken Voice Vocals

© 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

8
PRECIOUS CARGO
00:04:42

Emily Lazar, MasteringEngineer - Alli Rogers, AdditionalEngineer - Brad Cook, Producer, Drum Programmer, Synthesizer, RecordingEngineer - Hurray For The Riff Raff, MainArtist - Matt McCaughan, Drums, Additional Drum Programmer - Adam McDaniel, RecordingEngineer - Phil Cook, Piano - Chris Allgood, MasteringEngineer - Jonathan Low, MixingEngineer - Alex Farrar, AdditionalEngineer - Alynda Segarra, Vocals, Writer - Jeremy Iylvasaker, Electric Guitar

© 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

9
ROSEMARY TEARS
00:03:16

Emily Lazar, MasteringEngineer - Alli Rogers, AdditionalEngineer - Brad Cook, Producer, Synthesizer, RecordingEngineer - Hurray For The Riff Raff, MainArtist - Alexandra Sauser-Monnig, Background Vocals - Adam McDaniel, Additional Synthesizer, RecordingEngineer - Phil Cook, Piano - Chris Allgood, MasteringEngineer - Jonathan Low, MixingEngineer - Alex Farrar, AdditionalEngineer - Alynda Segarra, Lead Vocals, Writer - Matt Douglas, Saxophone - Al Strong, Trumpet - Evan Ringel, Trombone

© 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

10
SAGA
00:04:35

Emily Lazar, MasteringEngineer - Alli Rogers, AdditionalEngineer - Brad Cook, Producer, Acoustic Guitar, Bass, Synthesizer, Baritone Guitar, RecordingEngineer - Hurray For The Riff Raff, MainArtist - Matt McCaughan, Drums - Adam McDaniel, RecordingEngineer - Phil Cook, Marimba - Chris Allgood, MasteringEngineer - Jonathan Low, MixingEngineer - Alex Farrar, AdditionalEngineer - Alynda Segarra, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, Writer - Matt Douglas, Saxophone

© 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

11
KiN
00:00:50

Emily Lazar, MasteringEngineer - Alli Rogers, AdditionalEngineer - Brad Cook, Producer, RecordingEngineer - Hurray For The Riff Raff, MainArtist - Adam McDaniel, RecordingEngineer - Chris Allgood, MasteringEngineer - Jonathan Low, MixingEngineer - Alex Farrar, AdditionalEngineer - Alynda Segarra, Programmer, Writer, Recorded by

© 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc. ℗ 2022 Hurray for the Riff Raff, LLC, under exclusive license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

Album review

After a lifetime of running—away from their Bronx home as a teenager, for freight trains to travel the country, from New Orleans to Nashville and back to NYC—Alynda Segarra (aka, the force behind Hurray for the Riff Raff) was forced to sit still and look around when the pandemic all but stopped the world for a while. "Not being able to travel and get out whenever, I felt nervous energy inside me ... it taught me a lot about trauma and memories being stored in the body," they said. So Segarra began running, as in jogging, to get out the energy—but also sorting through the past and figuring out how to live with it, and thrive. Nowhere is that clearer than on "SAGA," a bittersweet, Velvet Underground-like jangle inspired by Christine Blasey Ford's sexual-assault accusations against then-Supreme Court Justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh, and how that led to a resurfacing of Segarra's own painful memories. "I don't want this to be the saga of my life … push it out of my mind," they rebel against a hopeful wall of horns, kittycat-cute backing vocals contrasting the chant of "Nobody believed me." (Their voice often recalls the power and silk of Annie Lennox.) You can feel Segarra's racing pulse in "PIERCED ARROWS" and a more measured pace in "WOLVES," with its mix of chilled synth, tribal drums and '80-style gospel backing vocals. It feels like a lost Yeah Yeah Yeahs song, and that's a good thing. "ROSEMARY TEARS" sounds sacred and holy, and "nightqueen" is atmospheric, the drums slowly floating in as if to pierce its bubble of keening synth. "RHODODENDRON" is great, as Segarra coos pretty plant names and makes them sound like a roll call of danger—"Rhododendron/ Night blooming jasmine/ Deadly nightshade/ Fox glove … " It bounces along like a joy-riding car without shocks, then settles into a groove just as the singer switches gears to wail their plea of a chorus: "Don't turn your back on the mainland!" It's a reference to their Puerto Rican heritage, and Segarra has said it's about admitting to the "colonizer inside us all." Finally, "PRECIOUS CARGO" is a stunner, Segarra's sing-song spoken word like documentary journalism as they speak in the voice of real-life ICE detainees. "Me swimming just to get across/ With the babies on my shoulders ... Made it through the jungle/ No water there for two weeks," the story goes, detailing the hardships of being captured while seeking asylum: split from their families, sleeping on the cold floor "like a dog." Segarra helped the men work with lawyers to win their freedom but stresses that just being free in the US does not guarantee a functioning, human system. © Shelly Ridenour/Qobuz

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