Royal Macadamians

  • Davitt Sigerson
  • Falling in Love Again (ZE/Island) 1984 
  • Royal Macadamians
  • Experiments in Terror (Island) 1990 

Prior to becoming the president of Polydor Records in 1991, music critic/record producer Davitt Sigerson had an occasional career as a songwriter and singer. Six years after making a lyrically clever but musically bland solo album scorched with his unpleasantly raspy vocals, Sigerson formed a group with keyboardists Bob Thiele Jr. (a sideman on Falling in Love Again) and Phil Shenale and created an arty and idiosyncratic mixture of jazz-and-funk-inflected tunes given a surrealistic spin. Experiments in Terror is a descriptive mind-movie soundtrack with cryptic vocal passages in place of character dialogue. The electronic music and disembodied texts are reminiscent of Will Powers, but the Macadamians stimulate a wider variety of moods, using source material as far-ranging as George Jackson’s Soledad Brother prison memoir. A concentration camp and the twisted, oppressive minds that run it — clinically described in the lyrics of “Arbeit Macht Frei” — are echoed in the pounding drums, crunching guitar and distorted solos. Intriguing and provocative.

[Ira Robbins / Rich Shupe]