Ginman/Eivør – “The Color Of Dark” (2014)

Label: Sony Music Denmark

Review by Alessandra Cognetta

“The Color of Dark” is the second album born from the collaboration between singer-songwriter Eivør and bassist, composer and producer Lennart Ginman. The duo brings together once again a mix of multiple genres, from pop to electronica to jazz, displaying great versatility. Eivør’s voice works as a common thread, even a guide, for the listener, stepping away from her usual material in a bold direction, but still retaining the quality and passion that has been the artist’s trademark throughout her career. Ginman has definitely succeeded in crafting songs that bring out the best from the musicians, creating music that is as varied as it is seamless.

The album kicks off with the soft tunes of “My Little Blue Star”, enriched by darker moments here and there and orchestral sections that help sustain the song structure and establish a particular atmosphere which shifts between crepuscular and smooth, like a soft caress. This feeling carries on through the whole album and relies heavily on the jazz foundations of the music, which are distinguished but also easily entangled with other styles, such as the pop-ish melodies of “The Sinner Or the Saint” or the strings mixed with electronica in “For Every Dream There Is a War”. Eivør’s interpretation is stellar, but it reaches particularly impressive heights, both figuratively and literally, in a few moments, like “Gloomy Sunday”’s ending or “Daughters”. It’s the not-so-secret ingredient that brings the songs one step forward and it’s clear that the duo has worked hard to obtain the perfect balance without exaggerating. It is notable how the absence of backing vocals doesn’t take away absolutely anything from the performance. Incredibly enough, if it would normally create a void, in this case it does nothing but contribute to an even more unique and intimate experience.

One of the highlights of the album is, without a doubt, “Son of the Sin”, where electronica alternates with a “soundtrack” vibe, an amazing beat and stunning vocals: a musical adventure for the listener who seeks the unknown. “The Color of Dark” finds its blackest hues in the haunting “The Ship”. The album closes with the aforementioned “Daughters”, probably the most emotional song of this release, and “Inside”, a bit groovier than the rest of the album but still aptly consistent with the overall theme.

The work of Ginman/Eivør is remarkable, as it offers the chance to discover new nuances of the music the more one listens to it. It’s a treat for those who value originality, but it is also easily approachable by the more disengaged listeners. “The Color of Dark” is nine tracks of very, very good music, there’s no way around it.

Rating – 88/100

Tracklist

  1. My Little Blue Star
  2. The Sinner Or The Saint
  3. For Every Dream There Is A War
  4. Gloomy Sunday
  5. I’ll Get You The Moon
  6. Son Of The Sin
  7. The Ship
  8. Daughters
  9. Inside

 

Line Up

  • Eivør Palsdóttír – Vocals
  • Lennart Ginman – Double bass
  • Mads Emil Nielsen – Drums
  • Kæv Gliemann – Keyboards
  • Oliver Hoiness – Guitar
  • Bjørn Winnem – Live sound

 

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