11 Songs, 34 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Like Brian Wilson or Fleet Foxes, Loney Dear mastermind Emil Svanängen approaches pop music from an orchestral perspective, layering and counter-pointing instruments to create gorgeous confections of melancholy. Hall Music's tracks slowly unfold with subtle textural interweavings, with lyrics ranging from the disarmingly plainspoken to the obliquely poetic. If the grandeur of some of Svanängen’s arrangements has been reined in compared to previous releases, the keen ear for sonic detail that’s always distinguished his work is still present. As expected, the tracks here are downbeat in tone, with traces of hope audible around the edges. Svanängen’s voice, with its eerie, keening falsetto, conveys more than his words literally express in tunes like “Name” and “Young Hearts.” The sparse embellishments of “D Major” contrast with the ghostly keyboard wash of “Largo” and the echoing swirl of “I Dreamed About You.” Malin Stahlberg takes the vocal spotlight on “What Have I Become,” a strangely uplifting ode to Scandinavian angst.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Like Brian Wilson or Fleet Foxes, Loney Dear mastermind Emil Svanängen approaches pop music from an orchestral perspective, layering and counter-pointing instruments to create gorgeous confections of melancholy. Hall Music's tracks slowly unfold with subtle textural interweavings, with lyrics ranging from the disarmingly plainspoken to the obliquely poetic. If the grandeur of some of Svanängen’s arrangements has been reined in compared to previous releases, the keen ear for sonic detail that’s always distinguished his work is still present. As expected, the tracks here are downbeat in tone, with traces of hope audible around the edges. Svanängen’s voice, with its eerie, keening falsetto, conveys more than his words literally express in tunes like “Name” and “Young Hearts.” The sparse embellishments of “D Major” contrast with the ghostly keyboard wash of “Largo” and the echoing swirl of “I Dreamed About You.” Malin Stahlberg takes the vocal spotlight on “What Have I Become,” a strangely uplifting ode to Scandinavian angst.

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