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.
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
If you’re up for The Books, Four Tet, Tortoise, The Sea and Cake, and Matmos, Erik Nilsson’s music could be your cup of tea. Nilsson’s subtle and efficient guitar playing and discreet electronic instrumentation, composing and performing mixing live instruments and field recordings is quite gorgeous.
The musical world of Markus Mehr is really a place to go explore. I’ve been amazed and chilled by Mehr’s music on several occasions, with albums such as On (2012), Off (2013), and Binary Rooms (2014). This time around some other artists explore Mehr’s music, or song, as they have remixed his track “In The Palm of your Hand” (from his last album, last year’s Binary Rooms).