LJUNGBLUT – Villa Carlotta 5959
There are traces and elements of Madrugada, Midnight Choir, latter-day Anathema, and even The The to be found within Ljungblut’s musical nuanced sphere. "Villa Carlotta 5959" has a deep-seated melancholy to it that verges on the pitch black at times, but there is always a glimmer of hope and light lurking underneath the surface of it all. The record has a delightfully warm and organic sound to it and yet some of the melodies are so chilling and cold that it is borderline frightening. I truly dig the many contrasting forces that are in play within the music. In many ways, it feels as if one is listening to a gloomy and bleak soundtrack consisting of moving and heartfelt songs written by a bunch of morose Norwegians, which is obviously a compliment. I especially cherish the tunes that are somewhat hypnotic and trance-like such as "Hasselblad", "Superga", and "Til Warszawa", but in the overall perspective, we are dealing with an utterly dark affair possessing a rather surreal and otherworldly vibe that lends weight to the illusion that we are penetrating the core of a man’s soul and staring into an abyss of longing and conflicting emotions. That the lyrics are written and sung in Norwegian adds even more depth and conviction to it all.
Although "Villa Carlotta 5959" never really attains those stratospheric heights where each and every hair on your arms stands up, it is nevertheless infinitely more emotionally charged than most metal albums out there, so if you are on the lookout for introspective and charismatic rock to suit that foul November mood of yours, look no further than this one.