20 May 2011

Annelies Monseré & Richard Youngs - three:four split series volume 3 (Three:Four, 2011)

Nice association for this new split ep on the Swiss label Three:Four records. On one side the Belgian songwriter  Annelies Monseré and onn the other the famous UK musician Richard Youngs, both contributing with one track, both multiplying an idea of song through different repetition approach.

"Sand" by Annelies Monseré is very typical of her style, whispered ethereal icy voice and melody full of intimacy, strangely remorseful and disabused, following an austere path of lamentation as a way of redemption.

She is offering five different versions of the song, using each time a different instrument : melodica, guitar, piano, cello and finally organ. The conclusion is that it is difficult to decide which is the bad version and they could be almost interchangeable. It is an interesting trial but it can also be seen as indecisive and as an abstract idea. After having spend some times with these five versions, i just wish she would have developed a longer version with instrumental passages, combining several instruments together in order to complete the nuances of each one.

On "Be brave, this world", Richard Youngs is using repetition of the lyrics and melodic phrase through a forest of mirrors, echoing it again and again, mixing it with heavily processed guitar sounds with a slow gradual evolution moving into circles through oscillations and reverb.  The result is both hypnotic and inducing a contemplative state of mind but after nine minutes we end where we started, like if we were stuck on an island. It is a worthy trip even if we never reach an orbital pace. I think this composition would work better in the middle of one of these albums he released on Jagjaguwar. 

Consistent but not groundbreaking, this conclusion works for the contributions of both artists.

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