Thursday, February 20, 2014

REVIEW: Black Twig - Heliogram

Paper Trees, Black Twig's 2011 debut was an intriguing blend of shoegaze and drone.  For their sophomore record, Heliogram, the Finnish band takes a broader approach to guitar pop, adding psychedelic elements and crafting more dynamic melodies.  For my ears, the result is a lighter, more pop-oriented album that sacrifices none of the warm tones that initially drew me to Black Twig's music.  My overall impression is that if Teenage Fanclub were injected with a minor dose of Nordic melancholy, Heliogram could be the result.  Lower register guitar chords, harmonies, lo-fi fuzz and dreamy soundscapes predominate.  It is a big, bold, room-filling sound that demands well-crafted song structures, and fortunately, Black Twig delivers fully delivers on that score.   And for those concerned about such things, the lyrics are in English.

Black Twig deserves to have an audience beyond Northern Europe, and Heliogram should deliver it.  You can take it for a test run with the second track, "Pastel Blue".

Black Twig is Aki (guitars/vocals), Aleksi (drums), Janne (guitars/keys/backing vocals), and Kaarlo (bass).  Heliogram is out now on Helsinki's Soliti Music label.

Soliti Music

No comments: