Experimental Music Love

January 22, 2010

fanshaw – Dark Eyes

Filed under: Album Reviews — by Free Edinburgh Podcast @ 10:33 pm
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fanshaw – Dark Eyes

The awkwardly cased (curse you artist names that just don’t care about where to put those capitals!) fanshaw has some pedigree to live up to. Her Vancouver home has seen the rise of such rapturous Canadian pop as New Pornographers and revelatory prog as Black Mountain, and her own musical adventures have seen spend time as part of The Choir Practice – a ramshackle collective of uplifting spirits whose member list reads like a slightly less successful Broken Social Scene.

Olivia Fetherstonhaugh’s (as her birth certificate would say) first record of her own though arrives free from fanfare or firework, offering something of simple melancholy, but sadly not much else. Whereas The xx managed to bring genuine fear and beauty into echoing riffs and processed, low-key rhythms, Dark Eyes follows similar patterns yet never breaks from an insulating monotony.

There’s solitude and confinement in each distant, underplayed note as these nine tracks become as sparse and abstract as their typically one word titles. ‘O Sailor’ may offer some brief foray into the world of interest, but this is a record lacking the bombast or joy of other modern Canadian efforts like Neko Case or Feist, managing to tease but rarely to tempt.

Such qualities may be lurking deep behind the drab curtains on display, but it all seems like it’ll take more listens than it’s worth to find out.

5.4/10

Release Date: 11 Jan

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