Top critical review
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Lacks the imagination, inventiveness and fun of previous releases
on 11 November 2012
A new Efterklang release was something that a lot of us were looking forward to. But having played it through again and again I'm still struggling to come to terms with it. Indeed, I began to wonder if I was a proper Efterklang fan, but a journey through 'Under Giant Trees' restored my faith in my underlying love of their work.
So why doesn't it work?
Well for me there seems to be a lot of dependence on the vocals of Casper Clausen which, whilst delightfully melancholy, begin to irritate - probably because there are just so much vocals on this release. Indeed I think this is the main reason why I'm struggling. In trying to depict an abandoned Russian settlement I expected more eerie musical arrangements and a lot less vocals.
Then there are the arrangements which I found rather uninteresting, often quite straightforward and in some cases very pop-derived. Nils Frahm's 'Dreams today' is excellent and 'Monument' is quite good but that's about it I'm afraid.
Some other reviewers love it so you'll have to make your own minds up.
The packaging is great, but then you don't judge a book by its covers - it's the plot that counts.
Let's hope this is a blip and 'normal' service is resumed next time out.