Working as I do in a clearinghouse for local music- and arts-related information, there's not a whole lot that blows my mind -- most acts you throw at me are things I've seen before. But sometimes an artist manages to defy convention to the point where I'm slightly confused, in a good way. Case in point: local musician Ali Spagnola.
She came to my attention when I was passed her new electro/dance CD, The Ego, which was released a couple weeks ago. The formal release show is this Saturday (March 27) at Alto Lounge in Shadyside. Digging back into her catalog, I realized that dance music wasn't always her gig; a few years ago, Spagnola released a pop album. More recently, she put out a record called Power Hour; this abum doubles as a drinking game. Shape-shifting? Beer drinking? Count me in.
The show Saturday at Alto has two parts: the earlier part, inexplicably, is the Power Hour drinking game concert. If you make it through that on your feet, the dance music part of the night begins at 11. The hooks on The Ego are pretty decent and the production is professional -- plus the lyrics are pretty sharp, if often nearly incomprehensible due to the digital effects added to the vocals. ("Bigger and better/ Too much is not enough/ I know I'm winning but I don't want the mercy rule," goes the bridge of the first cut, "I Want More.")
The first track is available as a download on Spagnola's site.