For more than a decade and a half, Pete and Maura Kennedy have been making music that recalls the jangly guitars of 1960s bands such as The Byrds and The Hollies.
Beginning with 1995 disc “River of Fallen Stars” and including more recent releases such as “Evolver” and “Better Dreams,” the duo has been universally praised for its “joyous ’n jangling” folk-rock sound.
Now, inspired by a sojourn in Paris, France, the husband and wife have reinvented themselves as Impressionist composers more in debt to Ravel than rock’n’roll, more akin to Burt Bacharach than Buddy Holly.
The Kennedys will perform selected tracks from their new CD, “Closer Than You Know,” when they headline the SyrAcoustic concert which kicks off Daniel Pearl World Music Days, at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 6, at the Catherine Cummings Theater, 16 Lincklaen St., in Cazenovia.
Critic Chris Nickson points out that the Kennedys “compose catchy, arresting material, and ‘Closer Than You Know’ is no exception.
It all starts in high style with the almost psychedelic ‘Winter’ before easing into the gentle ‘Rhyme and Reason,’ with its layered Maura vocals. Pete, as usual, shines instrumentally, playing virtually everything and proving once more how masterful he can be on guitar. But really, it’s about the writing and delivery, as the sublime ‘Cradle to a Boat’ shows, as perfect a piece of acoustic pop as is likely to come around during 2012.”
Raised in the Syracuse area, Maura Boudreau performed here in the 1980s in bands such as Sparse Frontiers and the Delta Rays. In 1992, in Austin, Texas, she met Pete Kennedy, a native of Northern Virginia, who performed in Nanci Griffith’s band.
Now married and residing in New York City’s East Village, the couple continue their collaboration with Griffith. Pete produced her new disc, “Intersection,” and the Kennedys continue to tour with the fetching Texas tunesmith.