Maria Usbeck shares the lead single from her new album 'Amparo'

Ecuardorian-born, Brooklyn-based musician Maria Usbeck (former front woman of new wave outfit Selebrities) announces her debut solo LP Amparo and shares lead single, 'Moai Y Yo'. 'Amparo' (due out on 27 May via Sweden's venerable Labrador label) is a collection of songs written and recorded across the span of three years in Ecuador, Buenos Aires, Santiago, Barcelona, Lisbon, Easter Island, Costa Rica, Florida, L.A. and her home in Brooklyn.

Maria explains more about the first single "Moai Y Yo":

"I was inspired by the mystery of the Moai statues in Easter island. My Abuelo taught me about the giant moai heads many, many years ago and I carried this fascination with me; I was determined to see them myself. Rapa Nui is the native language of the island - it has Polynesian roots - it's cheerful and rhythmic sounds inspired the chorus of this song. My time on the small island initiated a real appreciation of tribal languages. This album is me going back to my roots and sonically sharing the anecdotes that I've learned from indigenous cultures."

Though the songs were composed electronically, 'Amparo' called for an acoustic treatment, so Usbeck spent a winter in the studio recording the arrangements live with producer Caroline Polachek (Chairlift) and engineer Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson. Fleshed out in full sonic color on the marimba, xylophone, quena flute, piano, and harp, the album stretched into something hi-fi and expressive, meditative but not meandering.

Photo credit: Holland Brown

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