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Music

Winter Family: Chevaliers (digital, Sub Rosa, April 2021)

This is a strangely wonderful thing from Israeli–French duo Ruth Rosenthal and Xavier Klaine. The first half consists entirely of Klaine’s quiet pipe-organ drone and Rosenthal’s even quieter vocals, a mostly monotone mumbling in (I think) a mixture of English, French, and Hebrew that borders on ASMR, plus the distant sound of church bells. The effect is rather powerful: is is the kind of music that has me constantly straining to hear more.

The second half starts in a similar fashion, except that the vocals seem a little more forward in the mix, a minor change which rather startled me on first listen. As it goes on, the organ gets slightly more insistent. Then, just over ten minutes before the end, we get a rather lovely piano accompaniment to one of Rosenthal’s most overtly poetic offerings; and with five minutes to go we suddenly get a strident blast of the organ with the vocals loudly proclaimed, the whole thing echoing around the church where it was recorded. It’s a striking ending to an otherwise restrained record. The whole thing is utterly bewitching.

I bought this from Boomkat. They call it Modern Classical / Ambient.

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