Carlos Hernandez helped shape the Brooklyn music scene in the 2010s as a resident of the abandoned DIY area Silent Barn, and as a maker and arranger for actors like Frankie Cosmos and Twin Sisters — and you may not know his name. As the bandleader and common vocalist of the perennially underplayed Ava Luna, he never snatched the focus. The Brooklyn art-funk team delivered a clever synergy and skill startup, with Hernandez frequently surrendering the mic to bandmates Becca Kauffman, who flies the quirky band, theater part, and Felicia Douglass, whose dynamic pipelines directed reflective heart. Hernandez can howl and sing with the best of them, but as Ava Luna’s job advanced, his possess tone was less notable.
Now, with Ava Luna on pause since the 2019 departure of Kauffman (alias performance artist Jennifer Vanilla), Hernandez moves into the spotlight with an amazing solo album of simple groove and R B trimmed to its briefest pure. And although he self-released an album as Carlos Hernandez in 2018, Not Mine is the artist’s first under the Carlos Truly alias and charges as his perfect vocals breakthrough. It is subtle and hot, Deftly bridging the gap between the classic heart themes integrated throughout everything Hernandez makes and the spiky hip-hop producer by the artist’s son, Tony Seltzer, who co-produced most of the mark.
Never does so combining of planets noise extra revelation than on the crackling electro-funk exercise “Dumb Desire.” Ava Luna often explained themselves as “nerve based soul” but that anxiety bubbles over into anxious drunkenness here, a tribute to the violence of creating hope renowned to a stomping ball. The song seems to be syly intoxicating, with Seltzer’s amplifying musical of synth splodges and boom-clap surpassed taunting on through Hernandez’ increasingly agitated vocal delivery, which includes straining the text “fire” into a five-syllable great. Leave it to Carlos Truly to create an introspective hit on the weight.
Hernandez’s tone — a sweet heart — stays his rawest. The father of a 70s New York heart DJ, Hernandez grew up listening to Al Green in the metro, and then you have the feeling that his commitment to noise that preceded his birth seems more than casual. He self-harmonizes and divulges an incredible vocal range “You Sound Like You’re Ahead” which is the case, appropriately, a tribute to the way a person’s tone could be absorbed into your brain; he screamed in mellifluous last song “Why Suffer??” like a veteran Prince could ever. You can imagine the track’s pliable groove, with its Stax-ready instrument tones, the sound of an old vinyl board on a hot day.
While Hernandez doesn’t seem to be drawn toward the story lyricism, He can demonstrate much more himself in this song than Ava Luna’ s. The band’s music emerged on “Irc” planets; Carlos Truly sings about his native city, New York. Influenced by youth moments of Central Park, the loop-driven “108th” is a Memories-Romance Collection against city dislocation and housing. The lyricism snapshots The tensions, personal attachments to put and their abject insignificance in The grand scheme of stolen land ( “No, we can’t take that old spot up by 108th/Even though that’s where we sat that third shift when you kissed me once”) as a string quartet consummates the track’s melancholy classic.
Great songs will leave you wanting more, but “Not Mine” accomplishes this somehow well. 23 minutes for 59 KP, it’s just a bit faint. Numerous songs — especially the 15-second instrumental ” (my turn)” and the interesting coral “A Strange Bird” experience more like half-finished drawings; the music suddenly stops, Very Nice XS!, with “Quietness” disappearing out after a minute and altering. The clarity is slightly confusing, when Hernandez turns into numerous neo-soul jewels that emerged on 2020’s Canal EP. But maybe reuse them as the wrong move. Not Mine is a thrilling new start to the song that has often noted the qualities of departing from the headset.