Mother Falcon


SXSW Records

Mother Falcon


The secret is out. Mother Falcon's five-song EP last year, Still Life – even at the time – was merely a dress rehearsal for the neo-classical tour de force performance that is Alhambra. Evoking the grandeur of Spain's Moorish palace, Austin's wunderkind chamber orchestra soars into its full-length debut on confident wings fully extended. "Overture" rises first, naturally, the listener entering a chamber of musicians stirring to life. As "Fireflies" exhales with its layered vocals – Nick Gregg, Claire Puckett, Tamir Kalifa – the 18 instruments become airborne. "I'm off in another place," Gregg repeats in "Sanctuary," the group filling the ear with the acoustic glory of its recording site – Austin's Central Presbyterian Church – as the strings pluck, lure. Such is Alhambra's emotional rush, lifted on orchestral swells and instrumental crescendos amid ethereal vocals. Its many moods – "For Papa," "Serpent Tongues," "Drown Me in the River," "These Things," "Just To See Her Smile" – are romantic, thrilling in their unexpected pleasures; "Rabbit Run" builds for two minutes before Gregg and Puckett chime in; "Kathryn" and the wordless "Waltz" are pure and utter romanticism; and "Alligator Teeth" makes Puckett one of Austin's most intriguing female artists of 2011. Even on this grand scale, Alhambra is simple proof that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Even when the parts are excellent. (Sat., 10:30pm, Austin Music Hall)


A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Mother Falcon
Playback: Mother Falcon’s Major Label Deal That Wasn’t
Playback: Mother Falcon’s Major Label Deal That Wasn’t
Mother Falcon signs to Universal and seconds later terminates the contract

Kevin Curtin, Dec. 9, 2016

Worst Tour Stories Ever
Worst Tour Stories Ever
The road goes on forever and the party never ends

July 8, 2016

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
Immersion (Record Review)

Christina Garcia, Dec. 14, 2018

Texas Platters
Ingebrigt Håker Flaten’s Village Songs
Den Signede Dag (Record Review)

Michael Toland, Jan. 26, 2018

More by Margaret Moser
Did I Know Bruce Springsteen Was Going to Play 2012?
Did I Know Bruce Springsteen Was Going to Play 2012?

March 3, 2017

Adult Audio Coloring Book Sampler
Adult Audio Coloring Book Sampler
A look back at illustrated album covers old and new

July 29, 2016


Mother Falcon

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Keep up with happenings around town

Kevin Curtin's bimonthly cannabis musings

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle