Spun: Bonnaventure James

By Manal Sheikh

Bonnaventure James’s humble beginnings at a University of Lethbridge music class have morphed into something more sophisticated and infinitely more exciting. One of the newer electronica artists in the Calgary music scene, Bonnaventure James has independently released his first EP, Buena Aventura. It is a glorious tribute to electronica, with a marvellous concoction of dizzyingly different beats, catchy melodies and a harmonious chorus of voices.

Some songs like “Never Look Back” follow a conventional pop routine with trodden lyrics, while others like “Cola,” which is about falling for an underage girl, follow slightly more offbeat topics. The choruses are mostly infectiously catchy.

Not all the tracks have a bubbly, light-hearted feel to them, however. “Radio Silence” has a darkly introspective take on a catchall of personal memories, with remnants of a relationship gone sour. It’s like an electronic version of Gotye’s “Somebody that I Used to Know,” with lyrics just as questioning and resigned.

The greatest part about the album is the way it bounces from light to dark, heavy to fun. Immediately following the melancholy, “How Dare You,” which features lyrics that serve as a tongue-in-cheek mockery of contemporary texting, there is the more upbeat “Poor House.” The song’s topic may be fairly depressing, but the beat is much more lively.

Buena Aventura proves that Bonnaventure James is a wonderful addition to Calgary’s music scene, and is a worthy addition to any electronica-lover’s collection. Like the EP’s title suggests, it is indeed a beautiful adventure.

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