Delicate Power (In The Hands Of Others)
by Erik Nilsson
by Glanko & Daniel Bailey
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When Hidden Shoal launched Erik Nilsson’s “Tail Lights” as a teaser from his album Recollage, I was triggered by its teasing beauty. Like I was taken last year when checking out his amazing second album, Hearing Things. This is all about hearing and finding things. Musical gemstones. Diamonds in the rough.
A new release by Kramies is always something to be cherished. But, this time, our favourite self-styled dream-pop artiste has maybe met his match. After his recent dalliance in Angers and the subsequent release of the sublime forêts antiques EP, now he’s partnered with Alma Forrer, a young French singer-songwriter influenced by Barbara, Jacques Brel, and Michel Polnareff among others. It’s hard to imagine anyone more baba cool than Kramies, but Alma Forrer might just have managed it. There are two versions of ‘Into The Sparks’ to download. So, don’t write off the acoustic version, which is simply sublime.
It’s spacious, with songs often composed of just a few hallowed notes, but what Outerbridge creates from the silence between is astonishing. Deeply affecting and instantly captivating, the album captures Outerbridge’s world in vivid sound and tantalising composition. 8/10
elegant and elegiac are descriptions so freely handed out these days that they somewhat lose a little in their meaning. Yet conversely, applied to Antonymes, they somewhat falter and fall short in truly unmasking or rather more, getting to the nub, of the eloquence and sensitivity of expression at play within his compositional craft. Tendered in a delicacy of touch and a sparseness of detail, the result of such a communion is far from slight and light, but fulsome and lush, ‘delicate power’ lifted from his recently released set for hidden shoal entitled ‘(for now we see) through a glass dimly’ is title alone very revealing of this. For here it’s were the coalescing calm of a pausing moment of isolation breathes a reflective sigh to mourn, romance and contemplate in solitude all the time its tenderness and poise tempered in symphonic gestures that backwardly glance to a timeless toning of tongue. As said the track heads up a new EP titled ‘delicate power (in the hands of others)’ that features reworked interpretations by Markus Mehr, Lymark and Marconi Union.
For those who are unaccustomed to the work of Erik Nilsson, the recent reissue of his debut album ‘Recollage’ will certainly coming as something of an unexpected treat. It’s an album that often seems to have been unfairly eclipsed by the progressive sounds of successor, 2015’s ‘Hearing Things’, but in this new re-release by Hidden Shoal, ‘Recollage’ is brought back into the spotlight, letting it shine once again as a unique and unhindered triumph.
An album filled with a joyous and vibrant sense of playfulness, the re-issue of ‘Recollage’ brings together nine tracks (eight re-mastered and one original version) of skillfully blended electronics, live instruments, and field recordings, all of which are tussled, tossed and twisted through a series of digital manipulations. The end result is an expanding horizon of dizzying, technically precise instrumentals that are emotionally charged and brilliantly balanced.
Fragmented by sporadic, glitch bursts of open space, ‘Recollage’ was always a thoroughly unique spectacle, but with the re-issue has come a burst of extra instrumentation and a full re-mastering, and it’s taken the album from mesmerising to break-taking. The added flourishes and clarity has made ‘Recollage’ brighter, more vibrant, and more exciting than ever, offering a greater depth and a completely captivating experience.
The reissue of ‘Recollage’ has brought renewed life and colour to the old classic, and it’s amazing to revisit such a precious debut. 9/10