Since 1996, the Copenhagen band MY BELOVED composed of Iver Ask Overgaard (guitars), Danny Søndergaard (drums), Thor Vincent (bass) and Lars Kivig (piano/synths) has lived in the Danish and German underground scene of experimental rock. MY BELOVED´s music has over the years been used on several documentaries on DR (National Danish broadcasting company), where the band was also at the top of Radio P3´s The Electric Barometer with the song, “After The Speechless Head” from the debut album Servant Of Secret Places. Recently they released a full-length album entitled Tarnish which is a twelve-song album.
Their music mixes elements of post-rock, ambient and other like-minded genres. They get going with “A Distant Hello” and right off the bat I liked their sound. This song is very lush and the emotional resonance is subtle and changes. It’s moody, hopeful and overall does a good job in not getting held down in a particular feeling.
The energy rises with “Dead End” and the album starts to feel like it’s moving now. There are repetitive melodies and steady grooves which are enhanced by walls of distortion. I did get the feeling the song was building and oh my it was. There are some beautifully explosive sections on this song and in all honesty at this point It felt like these guys were real pros. The experience they have is evident.
“Frontier” is spacious but huge sounding. The song is haunting in Godspeed You! Black Emperor type of way. Lots of reverb and an introspective and sprawling quality to the song. “Echo Mans Dream” is a seven-plus minute song and a slow burn. It’s beautiful, haunting and also meditative or perhaps pensive depending on how you interpret the sound.
The band does a great job making every subsequent song sound like a piece in the puzzle as they roll along with “Restored” and the title track “Tarnish.” “Writhe” is the arguable centerpiece. They reach some vast heights with this song and oh man I have to give extra credit to Søndergaard for the incredible drumming.
As the album continues I enjoyed all the songs but there are some highlights along the way. “Unknown Origin” is a wild and intense ride while “Solitaire” contains instrumentation that feels symbiotic. I loved the sound of this song. The spiritual sounding closer “Superior Mirage” feels like you’re approaching the vortex in the center. It buzzes with cosmic like property and sounds otherworldly and comforting.
I think fans of post-rock will feel right at home with this release. It builds on some of the classic qualities that made this genre known in the first with longer form songs and ambient soundscapes. I think what really makes it exceptional is the musicianship. Highly recommended.
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