Eliet Brookes

By - Sep 1st, 2003 02:52 pm
Get a daily rundown of the top stories on Urban Milwaukee

By Brian Barney

Eliet BrookesThe Miles Left Over

Recorded poetry and spoken word do not get commercially released as often as they should. Look for it in a store and you’ll be sauntering through the same ghetto aisle that has been set aside for “comedy.” Luckily for those of us who wade through Adam Sandler, Weird Al and the Jerky Boys, there exists poetry CDs like Eliet Brookes’ The Miles Left Over — eleven tracks of sheer pleasure. Settle into a pleasant moment, fire-up the CD player, cuddle up with Brookes’ beautiful voice and don’t forget the cocktail party at the bar on the fifth track.

Exquisitely produced by Brew City musician Paul Setser, each track features musical accompaniment ranging from the talents of acoustic guitarist Richard Pinney to Paul Lawson to the Aimless Blades to Setser himself. Never obtrusive, the music adds to the substance of Brookes’ voice at every turn.

Brookes works from a variety of moods quite successfully. Overall, there is a sense of incredibly tranquil peace, even in the bittersweet moments of the second track, “annie from broken street.” Somewhere halfway through that fifth track, Brookes says, “of course, none of this is true.” Somehow she manages to make even something this haunting sound very reassuring. Remarkably dark moments are traveled through with great grace.

Brookes’ voice is not the only one on the CD. The fifth track features cameos by poet Lisa Mahan, musicians/poets Tank Staggers, Voot Warnings Rustle of Luv and several more. And then there’s the seventh track. Eamonn O’Neill manages to make Brookes’ contemporary poetics sound vaguely like Middle English. The journey ends on an intriguingly Asian-sounding “usyoumewei, (eliet’s mantra),” as performed by singer/songwriter Mariah Myerson.

Can’t find the CD? Eliet Brookes can be reached at: herontree@ecoisp.com. It is also available at Woodland Pattern.

See Eliet: Sept 8: Thai Joes Sept 18: Zodiac Luxury Lounge Sept. 24: Y-Not II Sept 26: Bremen Café

Leave a Reply

You must be an Urban Milwaukee member to leave a comment. Membership, which includes a host of perks, including an ad-free website, tickets to marquee events like Summerfest, the Wisconsin State Fair and the Florentine Opera, a better photo browser and access to members-only, behind-the-scenes tours, starts at $9/month. Learn more.

Join now and cancel anytime.

If you are an existing member, sign-in to leave a comment.

Have questions? Need to report an error? Contact Us