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Album review

The Chatfield Phoenix offers up duality and emotion on latest release

“Nest of Bones,” the new album by Hancock/Peterborough duo The Chatfield Phoenix, is an exercise in duality. Seth Chatfield and Adam Phoenix play off each other perfectly, with a pair of acoustic guitars and vocal harmonies twisting and fusing together to form one voice, at sometimes plaintive, at others rising in an animalian snarl.

Role reversal plays a big part here, from the album art, the onstage persona and even the music itself. The title track finds the two trailing each other vocally, Phoenix nipping at Chatfield’s heels; the next track, “For the Birds,” flips that script in what may be the catchiest song about eating babies you’ve ever heard, whistled birdcalls and quirky deliveries providing a jaunty juxtaposition to the lyrical content.

“Masks” is a hard-driving ride that finds the two crescendoing to an all-out howl. It’s one of the strongest songs on the album, raw emotion oozing from every guttural growl and lugubrious lilt.

You can catch the Chatfield Phoenix at Local Burger in Keene on Aug. 15 with Wes Aldrich (Hug the Dog) opening. “Nest of Bones” is available at the Toadstool or on iTunes (itunes.apple.com/us/album/nest-of-bones/id888696955). For more information, visit facebook.com/ChatfieldPhoenix.

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