10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
More Elegance Than Malady,
This review is from: The Malady of Elegance (Audio CD)
Golmund (aka Keith Kenniff/aka Helios - confused yet?!)
is a Boston-based composer/"sound designer" and writer.
(As Helios his 2008 release 'Caesura' was particularly delightful).
As Golmund things are stripped down in 'The Malady Of Elegance'
to a piano and subtle electronics. The results are utterly magical.
Like its strangely evocative artwork these fifteen pieces
could be compared to a box of yellowing photographs found in
the panelling of an old empty house which has been locked up
many years ago and left to the wind and the rain and the birds.
The titles may well be clues to real events or images of them
frozen in time. The uncertainty is part of the enchantment.
The thematic material is simple but beautifully realised.
The hymn-like 'Threnody' advances barely breathing.
The half-heard crackles and creaks and the gentle
electronic sound-washes sound like they might
be a part of the piano's very fabric.
'Ouendake' is another evocative piece reflecting Mr Kenniff's
interest in early American history. (My own scufflings around in
the darker reaches of my library suggests that the title is
connected to the Wendat community of indigenous North American
peoples who settled in Canada's Ontario region and suffered
horribly at the hands of the Iroquois in the mid-1600's).
The bleakly poetic folk-like construction is full
of a sense of something never known and now lost.
That's the thing. These beguiling pieces plant pictorial
and narrative suggestions in our mind's eye without our
having quite realised that we'd invited them in.
They are gentle and welcome intrusions none-the-less.
Alternatively, once you've done the thinking you can
just sit back, sink into it and virtually disappear!
A track by track deconstruction would doubtless have me
repeating the same enthusiasms ad infinitum so I'll pull
back from that edge and jump to the final piece 'Evelyn'.
Dark bass chords planted over a simple right-hand
ostinato slowly evolve into a trancendentally
beautiful series of Autumn-hued reflections.
The fragile coda evaporates into nothingness.
It's a cold and very wet night once again in The Home Forest.
In The Wolfcave things are warm and cosy. Mrs Wolf is dozing
in her armchair by the fire and the cubs (Scatty and Gritz)
are playing a board-game ('Rabbits and Burrows' I think!) more
calmly and co-operatively than I have seen them for a while.
'The Malady Of Elegance' has, so-far, been
the perfect soundtrack to my evening.
Now if I can only find that rather special 2004
Vosne Romanee that the Father-In-Law
bought me for Christmas ....
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Showing 1-6 of 6 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 20 Nov 2010 23:46:01 GMT
Great review. So very difficult to aptly describe an album such as this, but you managed it very...well, elegantly. Kudos, sir - and thank you for the review.
In reply to an earlier post on 22 Nov 2010 09:35:38 GMT
Many thanks for your kind comments.
Posted on 12 Aug 2011 01:25:53 BDT
Read this review whilst listening to Eingya - and what you wrote was beautiful to read and its words told me to get my wallet out again.
In reply to an earlier post on 12 Aug 2011 14:23:22 BDT
Many thanks for your kind comment.
I hope you find as much to love in it as I have.
Posted on 15 Sep 2013 13:29:15 BDT
What a wonderful review, took my breath away. Damn, I got something in my eye...
In reply to an earlier post on 15 Sep 2013 15:32:00 BDT
Last edited by the author on 15 Sep 2013 15:35:36 BDT
Awwwww! Thank you Bananaman!
It is a truly beautiful album....
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