Mi and L'au | Review | jay

Best songs of '05

"A Word in Your Belly" (Mi and L'au) Even among an album as subtle as this, there's a pronounced feeling here that the waters are parting for a moment, that time is slowing even more, that we're all being asked to take a step back and watch this song unfold. It seizes you unexpectedly, when that soft bed of low strings stretches itself before you, and you feel the muscles behind your ears tense up, and you catch the faint sounds of shirt sleeves, the soles of feet, the dust in the air, and the arching of brows in awe of such grace. Then there's L'au's voice, placid and sincere, his tongue curling around the word "calm," repeating those two enigmatic lines. And later, that one violin, sailing over everything on a single, sustained note. After four minutes, the song never really ends, but only sinks with a kind of quiet resignation.