Knitting Factory productions tend to feature artists on the cusp of multiple genres, and Pharaoh's Daughter is no exception. The fare on Exile
could be fairly described as adult-alternative pop, but the evocative string arrangements and borrowed musical elements from the Middle East and klezmer that set them apart from other artists. There's not much jazz going on, though, other than perhaps some trace elements found in Ben Zwerin's supple bass.
Basya Schecter sings well with a flat voice that matches her introspective lyrics. They are mostly weighty and intriguing, though she does get a bit morbidly self-possessed on songs like "Statue" & "Confession." The most interesting aspect of the CD is the way electronic sounds are integrated with acoustic ones--recorders and strings share space with electronic beats and processed vocals, an accordion introduces "Going Nowhere."
The Knitting Factory--the club and the label--often present acts that push at the boundaries of rock and jazz. Their release of Pharaoh's Daughter's Exile
shows that they are interested in other musical forms Underground as well. This is an interesting CD, even if it doesn't seem aimed at what I hypothesize as Jazz Review's core audience.