Rabbit & The Hare is proof that good things can happen on Craigslist. The band formed after singer/songwriter Neill MacCallum posted an ad in NYC’s section of the website in search of a “female multi-instrumentalist.” Marisa Duchowny, a person that happens to fit both of those requirements, also happened to read and respond to that post. Just like that, with the strange power of the internet, a duo was born. Marisa became the Rabbit, Neill the Hare.
The duo recently released a full-length, self-titled album, and although the band consists of only two members, their songs are fleshed-out and fully-formed. Marisa’s role as a “multi-instrumentalist” truly came to fruition after the formation of the band, as piano, guitar, drums, bass and numerous other instruments are at the forefront of the band’s tracks. “Behind Your Eyes,” a smooth, laid-back and jazzy tune, is perhaps the best demonstration of the duo’s use of a wide array of instrumentation. The song features subtle horns and a strong guitar solo, and it’s one of the standout tracks of the album.
Many of the songs on Rabbit & The Hare contain grandiose, cinematic qualities. “Isabel,” for instance, uses sweeping strings and soaring vocals. The electric guitar and effect-laden vocals on “Dona Dona” lead to a heavier, indie rock sound.
The band plays primarily with acoustic guitar and the piano features heavily, yet those instruments are never toned-down or boring. Their songs are light and airy, but never sparse or subdued.
“I could meet you halfway,” MacCullum and Duchowny both sing together on the chorus of “Then I See Her,” an uptempo, acoustic-driven song. The track is a love song about curing one’s problems by simply seeing a certain girl, but MacCullum and Duchowny might as well be singing about each other. The two truly do meet each other halfway in the performance of their songs, and neither quite takes center stage. On some songs, like the aforementioned “Then I See Her,” MacCullum features as the primary vocalist . Tracks like “Isabel” find Duchowny taking lead vocals. On tracks like “Fragile Things,” the two trade-off lead duties, ultimately singing in harmony together.
By fusing together their respective strengths, Rabbit & The Hare evoke the sweetness of modern bands like She & Him and the musicality of classic groups like Fleetwood Mac. The simple fact that the band consists of male-female duo may cause some to box them into a particular sound or style, but Rabbit & the Hare proves that they are capable of much more.