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    Taken By Trees

    open field

    Open Field( 2007 )
    Tell Me / Julia / The Legend / Sunshine Lady / Lost And Found / Open Field / Hours Pass Like Centuries / Too Young / Only Yesterday / Cedar Trees

    Victoria Bergman departed The Concretes, not enjoying being away from home and not liking the democracy the band had become. Not that she was power crazed and wanted the attention for herself, rather it was simply she doesn't believe true art can be created in a large band line-up. Fair enough. So, the title of her new project apparently reflects her love of trees. The album is a very minimal affair allowing her voice to take centre stage. Many of the songs are built around a single piano or guitar repetition. Ten short songs totalling thirty four minutes, the kind of simplicity a true folk artist might present. So, whilst the sound may be very different from the indie-pop of The Concretes, the song constructions do retain similarities, the way the songs go round in circles, the fairly simplistic although always effective lyrics. In short, if you liked Victoria's voice in The Concretes, you'll also love it here, even though 'Open Field' is very much a minimal sound. The opening 'Tell Me' is a very good indication of what to expect. A single, quiet and repeating acoustic guitar pattern amongst a single repeating bass note which joins in during the verses. Her voice holds the album together and it manages to do so. The 2nd song hear i've been listening to an awful lot, 'Julia'. A single piano note this time to open up before 30 seconds in simple percussion arrives. A lovely little pretty guitar melody arrives just over a minute in and that's the music. Her story of 'Julia' though is beautiful and her voice is pure and unaffected.

    'Hours Pass Like Centuries' would have made a great Concretes pop song. Here, it's just under two minutes. The lyrics are intriguing and Bergman singing over these little piano patterns just sounds great. It's a strange thing though, this album. It's not folk. It's not really singer/songwriter, although that's what Victoria Bergman is, I guess. It's indie of course, alternative and whatever words you want to use. It'll likely sell far less copies than The Concretes and The Concretes will now also sell far less copies than they used to with Victoria in the band. So, we can deduce this album is a true artistic effort, simply because Victoria Bergman couldn't stop writing songs and needed a vehicle for them. It's a decent album, but even at 34 minutes, seems slightly too long and a little much needed sonic variation is only provided for by the title track, an instrumental arranged and ostensibly performed by Peter Bjorn and John. Still, have I mentioned 'Lost And Found'? 'Lost And Found' is the best pop song here. Like The Concretes without the instrumentation, appropriately, although with stirring production and arrangements from Peter Bjorn and John.

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    this page last updated 22/09/07


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