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Boho Zen 

Release Me EP (www.yourband.com)

The duo behind Boho Zen have played power pop in various Northeast Ohio acts together for decades, and they know how to write a song. They know how to tell a story too, as in "Drink Her Pretty": "I don't know what I was thinkin'/All I know is I love drinkin'/Everything I say is witty/And I'll drink until you're pretty." Sounds like obnoxious bar-band wit so far, but it ends with a twist: "But I never knew/She was drinkin' me pretty, too."

More important, the guys can play. Howard Fencl's lyrical guitar solo in "Amazing Trains of the World" is as much a part of the song's narrative as his words. He and drummer-singer Bob Walker radiate a deep melody on the bittersweet "Paper Houses" and wax Beatlesque on the melodic disc-closer "Wouldn't It Be?" With this fourth recording, Boho Zen's resemblance to intelli-pop icons XTC remains firmly intact.

Speaking of Regional Beat

More by D.X. Ferris

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