DM Stith's falsetto voice is similar to Antony Hegarty's from Antony and the Johnsons, in the sense that you either like it, or you find it grating like Styrofoam rubbing against itself. While I'm not a fan of Hegarty's vocals, I've warmed up to Stith's on Heavy Ghost Appendices, a double disc that features a number of cover tunes, as well as remixes and reworked songs off his 2009 debut Heavy Ghost.
Stith's songs are rooted in indie folk, but they sit on the experimental side of the spectrum. That alone is enough to give it a try. Tracks like "Pigs (featuring the Jefferson Street Band)" weaves clang-y percussion and guitar strumming seamlessly with trumpet, tenor sax and clarinet, while Stith's obtuse lyrics conjure striking images. Other tunes continue along the same vein, like his cover of Randy Newman's "Suzanne," which uses layered, high-pitched vocal harmonies to great—and creepy—effect.
The second disc is equally alluring, and showcases impressive sound mangling and bangin' beats from electronic producers like Michna and Bibio. Altogether, this is a patchwork of dense textures and strange lyrics. It certainly isn't your run-of-the-mill coffeehouse folk music, and that's exactly why I dig it.
DM Stith plays the Palace Thursday, July 1, at 9 PM with Inlets, Silje Nes, Nate Hegyi and Travis Sehorn. $5.