Friday, April 12, 2024
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Label: Nordvis Produktion

Date: 12 January 2024

Hearing this album over and over again has made me realise that I don’t listen to enough ambient music these days. Twenty plus years ago, when I lived in the city, I used to detox with the likes of Arcana, Dead Can Dance, Autumn Tears and Hagalaz’ Runedance. As well as a bit of Wongraven. Now I’m back where I belong, in the countryside, I live a much more chilled lifestyle.

So, rewinding, just a little, this is the debut album from Linnea Hjertén. Someone I know very little about, apart from the fact that she’s only 20 years old. Without wanting to overindulge in wordsmithery, the easy description of her music is Swedish Folk meets Dark Ritualist Ambience.

In terms of the music itself, I think everyone will say pretty much the same, but with a few tweaks on the language used. You can use ambient, spiritual, lush, enchanting, atmospheric and any similar word that any half decent Thesaurus can conjure up. This is music that draws you in, calms you completely and your body and mind then just glide along on an exceptional serene journey, guided by Linnea’s dulcet tones… which I’d compare to the more (ethnic) chanting style of Lisa Gerrard, which is a huge compliment, especially for someone so young.

And while age doesn’t really come into it, the fact that Linnea can make music of this quality at such an age bodes extremely well for the future. I’d put this up against anyone I’ve already mentioned in this review. I’d throw Wardruna into the hat as well as the bigger budget version of what’s on offer here.

Over time and having gained more experience, I’d expect the music to have a few more layers, as this is very stripped back in places, although that might be the intention. But adding a few “bells and whistles” (not literally, it just means more features), will no doubt enhance the listening experience just a little more.

I’m trying my very best not to slip into hyperbole mode here. As a starting point, on what will hopefully be a very long and fruitful career, this is a very strong foundation stone.

Correction – My Apologies, it seems I got Linnea’s age wrong. She is in fact 31 years old and I found a different Linnéa Hjertén via Google, who is 20 years old.

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