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Nanang Tatang

Listening to Nanang Tatang is like finding an old favorite toy you'd completely forgotten about at the bottom of your closet. Of course it's not surprising that the music should sound familiar, given that Nanang Tatang's Daniel Littleton and Elizabeth Mitchell are also the founding parents of New York City's Ida. Listening to their album immediately settles your soul like the quiet echoes of a lullaby sung to you decades ago.

Littleton and Mitchell have worked together since 1992, when they founded Ida with Karla Schickele (aka k.) and Littleton's brother Michael. In 1999, four albums into their career, Ida took a break after touring with Low, during which Shickele launched her solo career while Littleton and Mitchell started a family. During the break, searching for a creative outlet, they created music in their private studio, experimenting with electronic and ambient elements.

Fast forward a few years (and another Ida release) and the two decided to take these home-brewed creations and release a "solo" record of their own. Their first album, Muki, features an eclectic group of arrangements ranging from Ida-esque piano-driven ballads to electronic meanderings reminiscent of Dntel Throughout these sonic explorations runs the common thread of Elizabeth Mitchell's voice and its trademark gentleness that pervades everything she's worked on. The compositions are often simple and repetitive, but pleasing the way a mother singing to a child can be. As Nanang Tatang the two have offered a beautiful collection of quietly exploratory songs which a pleasure to drift through. Whether the duo records further under this name or returns to work with Ida, we can be sure Littleton and Mitchell have further pleasures in store for us.