Review of Our House Is On The Wall [12k1061]

Boomkat (UK)

Our House Is On The Wall is the debut release from Swedes Murralin Lane, a duo formed by David Wenngren and Yiva Wiklund. While regular followers of Wenngren’s main project, Library Tapes, will no doubt be expecting some of his signature piano work, Our House Is On The Wall makes a clean break from that sound, instead framing Wiklund’s vocal pieces within crumbling lo-fi tracts fashioned from distorted tones and drones. The vocals themselves take on a certain abstract beauty, often calling upon decay-fixated effects or ramshackle recording scenarios (e.g. directly into a mobile phone). The resultant sound of these pieces (you could probably call them songs, in fact) is quite hard to define. While the prospect of faded vocals and corroded, droning backdrops might seem like a fairly familiar concept, there’s something in the execution of this album that’s very fresh. Perhaps it’s to do with the kind of ‘lo-fi’ sound being explored here. Generally when that term gets thrown around it’s in reference to cassette or other such analogue aesthetics, yet everything that greets the ear on Our House… is very digitised; instead of muffled tape sounds you encounter heavy spectral filtering or the kind of sonic side-effects caused by noise reduction plugins. Perhaps if Fennesz and Grouper got together to record some tracks the end result would be something along the lines of ‘She Was Climbing’ or ‘She Collected’. Another very fine 12k release.

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