The sound of The Bandmates’ The Buddha and the Alien is genteel psychedelic straight out of the 1960s and early 1970s. Self-produced by songwriters and vocalists Kimberly Cody and Susan Carson, the result is a bit self-indulgent — hinting at but never quite seizing its promise.
With a set list of originals and covers, the Dallas duo performs regularly at small venues around the region. Joined on the c.d. by Eden Automatic drummer Scott Miles and journeyman guitarist Lee Fortune, the Bandmates have managed a rather slight accomplishment, a little more than a half-hour of music that’s solid but occasionally wafer-thin.
The characters in the songs daydream (“incense and oil all in my head”), fantasize (“Losing track of time / Close the blinds”), and get hot and bothered (“You’ll be the one I do the shimmy with”). The lyrics — written mostly by Cody, with Carson handling the music — mostly go for the easy rhyme rather than advancing the songs beyond the obvious. The coolest image is in the song “Ice and Fire,” in which Cody sings, “It’s getting hot in here / I’m starting to sweat, you bet / ‘Cause I’m ice in the fire tonight … / I need someone to cool me down.”
There’s promise here, but miles to go.