Album Review: Selk, Beasts

Striking Debut From Minimalist Multi-Instrumentalists

Anna Jordan and Dennis Cassidy joined forces in 2012 under the Selk banner.

Their eight-track debut is an intriguing concoction of vocals, piano, drums, samples and electronic percussion.

There is a sharp intellect at work here. ‘You Move In Waves’ is an eerie, tense opener, that’s broken by a soothing, confident voice proclaiming: “With the changing of the weather/ I can feel you on my skin.” There’s a strange, haunting church music aspect to the song, as words are subtly whispered in reverse like prayers. Vocal loops and electronic drums spark the title-cut ‘Beast’ to life, but again, there’s a slightly unnerving aspect to it all.

‘Broken Bodies’ is gorgeously layered with exceptionally catchy xylophone tones accompanied by Jordan’s comforting vocals. ‘Sweet One’ is a delicate offering with birds chirping: there’s a yearning romance to it that bleeds through Anna’s voice and is heightened by an alluring piano.

‘To The Wind’ is a pretty song, but lightweight. ‘Been So Long’ sees the xylophone reappear over a vaguely distorted beat. “We are floating way above ourselves,” the lyrics chant, “forcing feet and hands to move about.” ‘Warrior’ and ‘My Only Friend’ are framed above an enchanting piano, and Jordan’s tender voice is tinged with sadness and remorse.

It all adds up to an atmospheric, evocative, and at times, sinister collection. Beast is well worth grappling with.

Beasts is out now!

 

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