Nina Blade is an artist who grew up in the Minneapolis, MN area. She is the founding member of The Arches. Having contributed 70+ releases on Bandcamp with The Arches since May of 2017, Blade continues to hone her songwriting skills as well as bass and piano skills with the band with her contributions adding a whole new depth to The Arches’ music. It is no wonder that she is embarking on her own solo adventures with her album The Silk Road. While her favorite pastime is playing her grand piano in front of the fireplace on a cold Minnesota winter night, Blade is also a student of fashion and has used the world of fabric as her platform for inspiration. The Arches support her on many of the songs and the sound is like that of old friends pursing conversations that delve into new sonic territory.
The Silk Road opens with “Tweed Bias” where the sound is driven by melodic guitars. The cadence is overall very smooth and soft. A soothing and relaxing feel could be detected running underneath the gamut of this track. The bass adds a rhythmic dimension to the song. Synths go on to give off an invigorating pulse throughout this song.
Following is “Big Crescent Satellite” where a giant sound forms from the guitars. A wall of guitars creates a big and boisterous vibe. The guitar riffs soar overhead. The drums and percussions accompany the guitars along with bass. The keys send out an amped cadence.
The guitar comes in supported by the sound of keys and synths on “Bolt.” The instrumentation mixes that of the organic with electronic embellishments, making the sound altogether more electric. The keys are energized and melodic. The synths give off a buzzing cadence that for the most part drones on in the track.
On the closer and title-track “The Silk Road” melodious sounds arrive from the keys. The cadence is soaring and has a full reverberating effect. Guitar riffs sound off overhead as well. Synths offer up an atmospheric cadence filled with an ethereal ambience.
The majority of this album is made up of instrumentals. With a real cool and smooth sound, the melodies on this record oftentimes consist of soft harmonies. This eight-track album mainly features tracks that are under three minutes of recording. Though these songs were on the shorter end, they were packed with depth and mood. Oftentimes atmospheric and soaring, the ambience on these instrumental numbers was grounded in an arresting cadence. Both cool and inviting, with an emphasis on keyboards and synthesizers, these classy tracks are something great to relax to or just something to stimulate your mood as you go about your day-to-day. Fans of indie rock and pop as well as avid followers of The Arches will appreciate what Blade has to offer here.
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