OLE TEIGEN – Aske og Jord
A few months ago, the incredibly talented multi-instrumentalist Ole Teigen released this deeply introspective and morose opus where utterly somber pianos and haunting strings weave together a tapestry of sound that oozes sorrow and longing. With the song titles and the stories behind them being extremely personal and close to his heart, Teigen’s beautifully crafted work is as emotionally (in)tense as they come.
The whole thing is rooted in a family tragedy and trauma, which entails that there is nothing uplifting about immersing oneself in this output as such and yet there are subtle flashes of light and glimmers of hope to be found throughout. There is also a sense of fragility to these memorable compositions, and I am having a hard time labeling or categorizing this stuff as it falls somewhere between neo-classical music, melancholy jazz, and arguably even a few discreet touches of prog rock. Strangely, a few melodies and some of the gloomy moods of the record brought to mind Nick Cave’s "Nocturama" LP (specifically the track "Wonderful Life") without necessarily sounding inspired by said work as such, but the point I am trying to make is that you should approach the record with an open mind.
Dark, heartfelt, and predominantly instrumental music that defies categorization and needs to be experienced as opposed to being put into words or summed up in a few poorly written sentences. There is nothing remotely lightweight about "Aske og Jord" and its bleak aura.