Detroit indie rocker Stef Chura has the kind of magnetic voice that music writers fall into ditches attempting to describe.
Froggy, trembling, and full of unexpected catches, it sits in the forefront of her debut album Messes, and she often uses her finger-picked guitars behind it to trace and echo her vocal melody, framing for maximum scrutiny. She seems confident with her instrument and to grasp how it works, the same way a good character actor knows how to use their pointy chin, their waggling nose, or their thick eyebrows. Breath to breath, note to note, she evokes different singers: On “Faded Heart” she sounds like Stevie Nicks impersonating Dan Bejar. On “Slow Motion,” she recalls Television’s Tom Verlaine, while on “You” she channels the velvety longeurs of Chrissie Hynde.