Robert Ellis – The Lights From The Chemical Plant

robertelli

This new Robert Ellis album The Lights From The Chemical Plant has been one of my favourites early in the year. The fans of classic country and folk music will probably struggle a bit, because it’s lighter and at times almost like a pop album. There’s something for everyone though, because it’s rather varied in style. Thankfully it still manages to sound cohesive. A couple of the songs drag on a little too long for my liking, but it’s not a big issue. Good song is still a good song even if it is a bit too long.

I really get lost in Robert’s voice. The vocals (and the whole record as well) always sound so warm that I’m probably smiling even when he is trying to break my heart. At best this is like the modern version of the warm, melodic and beautiful American pop-tinged folk music of the 70s. There are a few songs I’m not a big fan of (Bottle Of Wine, Sing Along), but at least 3/4 of this album is wonderful. This is one of my favourites and it’s called Pride. In the beginning I always picture Ville Leinonen entering the scene with his soft voice.


 
Robert Ellis Website

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Album of the Month: Gudrid Hansdottir – Taking Ship

gudridi

The month is almost over and I haven’t selected the album of the month. Of course I selected it a few weeks ago in my heart, but I’ve just waited and waited for the right time to write about it. It happens to me. I push aside albums that really matter in hope that one day I actually have the energy and time to write something meaningful about them. In the end, that time never comes and I realise the album I really cared for haven’t even gotten a mention on this blog. So if I haven’t mentioned your album, there’s two possibilities a) I don’t like it b) I like it too much.

Gudrid Hansdottir’s new album or mini-album Taking Ship falls into that b category. This faroese singer/songwriter has released a wonderful album that is easily worth that Album of the Month spot. I’m not sure is it her finest album, because the previous album Beyond the Grey was also very impressive. But Taking Ship is a dazzlingly beautiful album that contains seven wonderful songs. All of them have been favourites at some point, but lately the songs I love the most have been I Had In Mind To Stay (that reminds me of Frida Hyvönen) and that awesome You Blossom Like A Flower duet with Ochre Room’s Lauri Myllymäki. It’s all gorgeous though and this amazing little record works best as a complete work of art. This is the title track Taking Ship.


 
Gudrid Hansdottir at Facebook

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Black Twig – Heliogram

heliogram

Black Twig are on to something. Their new album Heliogram came out on Soliti a week or two ago and I like it much more than the debut. It’s sweeter and more melodic. Listening to Heliogram often makes me think of an old favourite band of mine, The Clientele. I really loved them back in the day (especially Suburban Light, A Fading Summer era), so I thank Black Twig for reminding me of them by writing songs like Summer Slow Down and On White that somehow catch that same spirit (without sounding like grade b copycats). I don’t think Heliogram as a whole is going to be one of my biggest favourite albums this year, but there sure are magical moments that I love to bits. For example that song I mentioned, Summer Slow Down, is just magnificent and worth all hearts. This however is the first single Pastel Blue.


 
The Black Twig Website

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