The new songs on The Excitement of Maybe from Exene Cervenka cover the many aspects of love, change and leaving. She owns a blended folk-rock sound mixed with pop music into a wide-open-spaces expression.
Her exotic lyrical scope ranges from the rapid heartbeat of an exciting love’s possibilities onto the lessons learned only by the passage of time. Exene showcases her eccentric vocal style in “Already In Love” by adding strong horn lines with Dave Alvin on electric guitar, and the solid bedrock from a Hammond organ. Alvin is known for his music in The Blasters, X, and lately working with The Guilty Women.
Exene softly sings on “Dirty Snow” painting a resemblance of the “dirty snow of Oklahoma” to the departure of a lover. What was once pure and pretty is now soiled and melts down the drain. “I’ll Admit It Now” is a rocker about missing a past lover remembered only from yesterday, a dream or a poem.
The jazz bassist extraordinaire Christian McBride is also featured. Maggie Björklund plays precise pedal steel tones on “Beyond You” to balance the despondent violin work from Jessy Greene.
The dreamy atmospheric vocal on “Alone In Arizona” has a mirage quality. The lyric is about despair from the loss of a lover now in California. This same expansive melancholic muse also permeates the ballad “Someday I’ll Forget.”
Exene defines a contemporary renaissance woman. She is a talented folk-rock singer, guitarist, multimedia artist, parent, author, schoolteacher, librarian, poet and punk rock icon. Her signature sound is an unexpected adventure of unknown excitement.