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coverpic flag Denmark - Full Moon 105 - 04/24/05

Jacob Faurholt & Sweetie Pie Wilbur
Queen of Hope
Quartermain Records

Balancing contradictions

The first few times of listening to Queen of Hope I found that several musical associations popped up in my head. Not of the kind; "Oh, they have been heavily inspired by so-and-so", but something much more subtle. Small elements like a particular way of singing, a little sequence on the harmonica or an unusual mix of instruments makes me think of not necessarily bands, but single songs that I like. In most instances, though, I cannot even pinpoint where the association leads to. I seem to be recognising fragments which feel familiar although the whole is novel to me.

The music appears mixed and complex and yet the sound has something minimalist about it. The record company's press release conveys that part of the band's characteristics is their 'charming amateurism and musical playfulness'. Maybe this is the reason behind another interesting contradiction; when mixing vocals the impression can sometimes be that whoever is singing think that they are the only one. The fact that it sounds really good together could be interpreted as a happy coincidence although I am certain this is not the case. There is something fascinating though, about each vocal being so individually audible and for it all to not just harmonize beautifully, but in some instances to be nearly touching!

The unpretentiousness of the record makes me think Jacob Faurholt & Sweetie Pie Wilbur would be great live. I would want sit very close, and although there would be an urge to sing along, I promise not to as I would hate to upset their special balance of contradictions.

Copyright © 2005 Åste Herheim e-mail address

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