Music | Album review – Ásgeir & Jerome LOL

In The Silence
One Little Indian

There is something enchanting about Icelandic music. Bjork makes music as if she were a mythical creature. Sigur Ros forge ambient yet popular soundscapes worthy of soundtracking the heavens. And Of Monsters and Men were seemingly granted the freedom of several alternative radio stations with their song ‘Little Talks’ in 2012. With his second album In The Silence, Ásgeir hopes to join this canon of music from the icy isle. John Grant, who has succumbed to the Icelandic attraction and currently lives in Reykjavík, helped the 21 year old Ásgeir to translate his lyrics into English, possibly in the hope of cashing in on Of Monsters and Men’s success in the language.
Despite this shameless career move, anything that is championed by John Grant should be worth a listen. Comparisons with Bon Iver, Ben Howard and Mumford & Sons will be warranted. He has aimed for that quaint, gentle acoustic sound that is so common among musicians in touch with folk tradition and has succeeded in creating a slick record full of melodic sensitivity and comforting moods. Asgeir adds curious smatterings of tasty electronica, most notably in the single ‘King and Cross’, which tows the line elegantly between the anthemic and the underground. Complex harmonies and some unconventional instrumentation lead you down strange paths while the acoustic bedrock of the sound resembles the warm light of home. In The Silence is tenderly instilled with the magic and idiosyncrasy of Iceland.

Oliver Walkden 


Jerome LOL
Friends of Friends  

LA based producer Jerome LOL, née Jerome Potter, flaunts his identity as an internet artist: his blog boasts a prolific portfolio of collages and images. Jerome is identified as a member of the Seapunk community; a movement started in the US through social media and upheld by their synth playing, tumblr blogging, 90s  house worshipping, blue haired, marine loving mascots. Along with Markus Garcia, Potter was member of the LOL Boys. Appropriately enough, the two met online but soon disbanded so Potter could focus on his solo project – a seemingly wise decision. Kicking off with ‘Deleted’ – a catchy, mellow house tune – the lyrics reflect youth culture’s use of the internet as a tool for connectivity and the song actually seems to question social media’s ability in allowing us to meaningfully communicate with each other. The strongest track of the E.P is ‘Always’, which features vocals from Sara Zagarino. The shuffling jazz rhythms combined with a steady, underlying and gently accentuated 4/4 beat and, along with the polyphonic synth, create a mellow and hypnotic yet thoroughly danceable track. The latter half of the release incorporates collaborations with Chicago based vocalist Angelino Lucero, but the hollow, overbearing beat on ‘Fool’ does little to complement Lucero’s otherwise pleasant vocals. Thankfully, final track ‘True’ is redemptive and really allows Lucero’s vocals to shine through – the echoey, oscillating soundscape and melancholic arpegiatted keys are reminiscent of a Sunday morning sunrise, easily drifting you from the dance floor and into a deep slumber. Delightful.

Nitin Rishi

image: Factmag

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