Monday, October 4, 2010

Her Name Is Calla - The Quiet Lamb

This was a tough one to write. The album is just so massive. Hopefully it's not a tough one to read. Go ahead; read it! It's one of the year's best albums.

While this album behaves as a sorrowful witness to our lost traditions and civilized blindness, opening track “Moss Giant” reveals the playful storytelling Her Name Is Calla is capable of. Violins sustain, mallets gong cymbals, and a hopeful piano awakens in a clearing. “Oohs” and “aahs” drift in and out, and the scene is easy to picture as we look upon an ancient tree, wondering, “How can something so true be so fragile?” The strings creak like branches echoing in the canopy, and with nature as our base, we begin the journey.

The tone set on this album hints at an inescapable, pallid future, not unlike the worlds of Radiohead or Cormac McCarthy. Western culture favors the mindset that we are all individuals in contention with each other for an exclusive version of freedom. Her Name Is Calla, like many artists, rejects this, and devotes a musical landscape to faith and hope for us all to awaken before more unjust and brutal realities unfold. Vocals are often used as atmospheric support, and this element imbues the rather dire tales with a refreshing sense of optimism.

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