Monday, December 19, 2011

Jenny Hval Fascinates

The latest artist to emerge from the fairy folk camp is Norwegian seductress Jenny Hval. Residing somewhere between being ghostlike and what the Cocteau Twins would sound like if they were Nordic & played acoustic guitars Hval lives in an interesting place. Her album, Viscera, is a strange record that's otherworldly, ethereal, and quite honestly frightening.

Far from a normal folk record and closer to something Diamanda Galas would record, Viscera, is a cold, sparse affair that meanders along with no set path in mind. It's a record that seems to be lost in a dark forest at night haunted by creatures from beyond that want to eat you. Viscera is the sort of record you wouldn't want to listen to in the dark or alone because it could very well scare the bejesus out of you. This is the soundtrack to some Vampire movie that has yet to be made.

Weird and at times wonderful, Jenny Hval is a truly captivating artist that even at her most boring, is still interesting. Viscera isn't really as exciting as it is captivating. In other words, I wouldn't say this record is fantastic, or any of the songs here are catchy but they are just weird enough to make you wonder what the heck they're all about. That being said, Viscera is worth a listen but not something you'd have to buy.

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