A peaceful yet broken-hearted indie-folk gem
Slow, methodical drone folk is the way I’d describe Old Amica in a nutshell. Their 2019 album ‘Constellation’ takes each of these things in turn and slow roasts a downtrodden folk vibe. It’s likely to have gone under the radar of most so I wanted to raise its profile today.
Old Amica takes the acoustic guitar and often a heavily reverb effected voice and mixes them into new sound spaces. Opening track ‘phosphene’ turns them into a beautiful ballad. ‘Holocene Dark Night’ makes them a massively depressing folk ditty. ‘Julia, Umea’ then adds a vocoder and breezy synths to shift into a miserable Sigur Ros vibe. All three tracks feel vastly different but fit the same theme and vibe perfectly. It’s the diversity Old Amica brings across the album that I love.
‘The Sleeping Sea’ changes things up again with clever production to chop and reverse guitar and harmonium into a dispirited shanty. ‘Condensation’ feels more introspective than ever with its warm acoustic guitars and ramshackle vocals. Everything feels broken but beautiful – like an indie coming of age movie soundtrack. ‘Juli, Goteborg’ takes that a step further with a simplistic acoustic piece. You’ll be relaxed and downbeat on one hand, but pillowy and soft on the other. It is a great mix.
‘Log’ moves Old Amica towards playful ambient sounds hidden behind an old piano. The ambience is here throughout the album with tiny synths, twinkles and glockenspiel plonks. Here is where it takes the lead for a beautiful mood piece that feels nostalgic and bittersweet. Equally ‘The Cascade’ feels more upbeat – running the risk of more Sigur Ros comparisons. The album then ends with the understated Lullaby of ‘the collision’.
Understated is a word I’d use throughout. Old Amica lives on the intersection of heartbreaking, beautifully endearing and falling apart. It gets better with each listen and is highly recommended for anyone wanting to cuddle their sadness into the night.
Recommended track: Holocene Dark Night
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