Froðbiar Sóknar Bluesorkestur, Heri Kragesteen, Kvonn

Froðbiar Sóknar Bluesorkestur «If The Ocean Was Wine» (Tutl, 2015)

Let’s not be snobs. The rock band’s album with a long title «Froðbiar Sóknar Bluesorkestur» turned out very pleasing to ears. One shouldn’t wait something miraculous from it, of course. The blues from the shore of the Atlantic Ocean is not very different from the typical one. So, basically, it can be played anywhere in the world. The musicians haven’t even tried to “reinvent the wheel” – just used the “ready-assembled” one. Such, almost childish spontaneity, wins over. You almost see, how all these respectable gentleman sit in their garage somewhere on the Faroe Islands, sip beer, smoke, and compose masterpieces a la B.B.King, or even make covers for his songs (the album, besides, includes the “Worried Dreams” of his own composition). I don’t want to judge «If The Ocean Was Wine» seriously. There’s nothing to analyze about it, no use to take any comparisons or find undermeanings. You just want to listen to it once, to appreciate the presentation of musical content, to have a good time, and then just to put the CD on the shelf and, perhaps, never listen to it again. Not because it’s completely bad (I’ve mentioned, that it’s nice), but ‘cause we’ve heard this for many times.

 Heri Kragesteen «Silas Og Aðrir Sangir» (Tutl, 2015)

I suppose, it’s children’s CD. I don’t know Faroese language, but the booklet implies, that the album was foremost recorded for younger generation. Despite this fact, «Silas Og Aðrir Sangir» sounds sometimes rather adultly. Especially the first, absolutely hit record Mín Lítla Sól». But every other compositions don’t abound with infantilism, by the way. Along with pleasing to ears singing of Beinta K. Clothier and Annfinnur Heinesen, you’ll also meet magnificent musicians in this album: Uni DebessÓlavur Olsen and Edvard Nyholm Debess. One will have good time, listening to this CD. There’s something very sincere about it (while writing this, I listen to the queer “Silas” and smile), that fascinates you immediately. In this regard, you don’t need to understand, what is sung in it about. You should just trust, and, without any hesitation, go walking to the wood and meet fish, zebras, tigers, elephants and other residents, living there. I should admit one thing, by the way. Children’s music doesn’t have any nationality. Some songs are assonant with ours. How nice the «Jóanes Í Trøðum» is! I think, I’ll listen to it once more.

Kvonn «Einglarót» (Tutl, 2015)

One of the projects of irrepressible Kristian Blak, band Kvonn, realized its second CD. I should admit, I haven’t found many differences between this and their first album. To my mind, though, «Einglarót» sounds more dignified: the violin takes the backseat and gives place to the flute (the booklet doesn’t inform, who plays it), guitar and mandoline. Generally, the band members are the same. Angelika Nielsen plays the fiddle, Ívar Bærentsen, Mikael Blak and, of course, Kristian Blak personally. You don’t find traditional music in it. There’s very good “fakes”, written by Angelika and Ívar. Kristian Blak plays in this album, rather, only the role of musician. None of the 12 compositions was written by him; he’s arranged only two songs: the traditional Faroese «Annað Land» and the Scottish «Auld Swaara».  By its new album Kvonn proved, that the project is se self-contained and not the clone of Yggdrasil. It’s a different story, in which ethnic music runs the show No jazz. Only Scandinavian folk music and nothing beside this.

Reviewer by Anton Kovalsky.

Translated by Irina Boiko.

Russian version reviewer.