Chris Bartels of the band Bora York is releasing a five-song EP entitled Myths and Molds. I went into the EP not knowing what to expect not being familiar with Bora York. His music is ethereal, atmospheric and often hopeful. He often covers his vocals in enough reverb to make them sound like a pad. The same thing could be said about the instrumentation.
Suffice it to say that the music falls in line with like minded bands such as Local Natives, Bon Iver and arguably Sigur Ros. Although at this point I’m not convinced his music is as esoteric.
Some of the tracks such as “Blind” felt more appealing to a broad demographic. The whole song but especially the first minute is undeniably similar to Bon Iver. The tones and textures reminded me of the songs off of Bon Iver’s self-titled album. Once the rhythm section comes in the song goes into an uplifting yet nostalgic wave of sound. Overall, a very enjoyable song from an aesthetic standpoint.
Up next is “Missoula” which is the highlight on the EP. I especially enjoyed the percussive elements on the song and the hook is undeniable when he sings “Give It All Away.” His alchemy skills were strong on this song combining melancholy, beauty and hope.
The remaining songs also has a lot to offer. The opening solo piano on ”Stay” paints the mood of a tranquil landscape. As the song progresses lush landscapes form with a unique juxtaposition again coming from the exceptional percussive elements. The way the guitar and bass slightly alter the mood of the song works. The song gains more energy but still shows some needed restraint. I’m glad the song didn’t go into cliche, melodramatic crescendo.
The title track felt a little more like an introduction to the closer “Counting Hands.” “Counting Hands” is arguably the most original and unique sounding track. That being said it reinforce the signature sound he establishes on the prior tracks.
Myths and Molds is a cohesive, well-produced album that deserves your attention. Recommended.
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