Boerd started out as part of the Royal Swedish Orchestra. Now stepping out to mix his classical side with downtempo electronica, Boerd’s new album has a quiet beauty to it that downtempo fans will love.
Across the album, Boerd sparks thoughts of Mandalay, Bonobo and a more electronic Manos Milonakis. From the opening tracks ‘It Fades Away’ and ‘Someone’ you think the album is going to venture into electronica with guitar and ambient tendencies. Both pieces are great but its the soothing beauty of ‘Silver’ that really turned me on to this album. The chilled drum loop chips away as the echoing piano bows down to the yearning violin. The violin serenely captivates you as the grooves persist. It’s one of the most relaxing experiences I’ve had in 2019.
From there the album starts to fuse the different sides together. ‘Little Else’ brings in vocal samples and smooth acoustic guitars bringing a Latin fusion vibe. ’39 Celcius’ verges on New Age with its aged and distressed piano. The should be a hit single ‘We Drown’ brings everything into a pop vibe with strong vocals from guest vocalist Stella Explorer. With Boerd noodling on his guitar and bass – the music fits more in Four Tet and an early Lamb’s space than what’s come before. There is a collaboration album waiting to happen with Boerd and Stella and if it were to pass – I am here for it!
That being said, the vast majority of the album relishes in the distant space it creates. Most of the tracks have an air element to them which makes the long, slow melodic burn really take hold of you. Tracks like ‘Sanctuary’ work that perfectly with its angelic synths and pianos. ‘Look’ which plays with scatty portamento synth evoking Boards of Canada vibes. The album closes with two beautifully graceful ambient led tracks with ‘Gem’ and ‘Mud’. The former is a cloudy pillow of synths whilst the latter relishes in acoustic percussion choices and reversed vocal samples soothing you to sleep.
Boerd called the album ‘Misplaced’ which is an interesting thought. He is a bassist playing in an orchestra, making electronic downtempo music. It fits. I’d argue that he utterly fits with each of these styles and genres though – they would not merge so easily without him. This is one of the best chill-out albums I’ve listened to in the last few years. By the time I’ve finished it, I felt like I was exactly where I needed to be.
Recommended track: We Drown
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