Pink Dolphins

Pink Dolphins

Pink Dolphins, the third outing of trumpeter jaimie branch’s electronic duo with drummer Jason Nazary, was released just two months before branch’s shocking and untimely passing at age 39. It is named for the Amazon river dolphin, a creature that branch liked to call “aquadelic” and something she saw as representing her mixed Colombian heritage. The lo-fi grooves and smeared sonic wanderings are pulled together by producer Jeff Parker, who augments the duo tracks with guitar, bass, and vintage synthesizer, plus an assist from Chad Taylor on mbira for “Delfin Rosado” (“pink dolphin”). Given the electronic aesthetic, it’s striking how much of branch’s trumpet playing here is straightforwardly open and clear, with little in the way of effects. Her horn sings out boldly, and she sings as well, on the track “Earthlings,” intoning the line “we are not the earthlings that you know” with an air of sensuous mystery. It’s a melodic hook that lingers much like the memory of branch herself.

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