A Temporary Dive
First Appeared in The Music Box, May 2006, Volume 13, #5
Written by Tracy M. Rogers
Swedish singer-songwriter Ane Brunís 2004 release A Temporary Dive finally has been issued stateside, courtesy of the Virgin off-shoot V2 ó and it comes not a moment too soon. In spite of its minimalist production, the album is imbued with a melancholic ambience that is worthy of Neko Case. Brunís voice is equally enchanting: an angelic, almost childlike soprano that possesses both Joan Baezís quaver and Joni Mitchellís lilt. Add to this confessional lyrics and guest appearances by indie singer-songwriters Ron Sexsmith and Syd Matters, and the resulting record is both mystifying and irresistible.
A Temporary Diveís opening cut To Let Myself Go is an enigmatic, bare-bones, folk-pop lament that enhances its introspection with haunting backing vocals, while The Fight Song features a frenzied slide guitar bridge in the midst of its ominous, inscrutable lyrics. Elsewhere, the country-folk Balloon Ranger is reminiscent of a solitary, late-night drive down a deserted, southern highway; the title track manages to be both mournful and hopeful, philosophical and accessible; and with a jaunty rhythm that belies its lyrics of depression and loneliness, Little Lights (Brunís duet with Syd Matters) concludes the effort on a high note. At first glance, the moseying rhythm and full-band production of Song No. 6 should seem at odds with the rest of the album, but beneath the spark and spirit of the tune, lurk the same ambient shadings that pervade the entirety of the affair. Of the outingís 11 tracks, only the overly simplistic Where Friends Rhymes with End is less than stellar, meaning A Temporary Dive is essential listening for fans of meditative, atmospheric euphony. Ĺ
A Temporary Dive is available from Barnes & Noble.
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1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2006 The Music Box