Sarah at her very best.
Having been made addicted to visiting her haunting world of melody through her album Nexus and anything after, I have been eagerly awaiting this new release. Being kept yearning for it via listening to Violet on her MySpace page and desperately waiting to have a copy to play on my MP3. I was sure that Violet being such a fantastic track would be the best, but I was surprised by the amount of songs that caught my attention. Finally being able to hear the studio version of Crumbs and Broken Shells was an added bonus (She had a downloadable Acoustic version on her site which I must have downloaded well over 20 months ago, I've since over played it. The studio version brings it back to life with more vigour and breath taking soul)
The album is just a deep ocean of haunting waves. Some soft cool and refreshing (Red Yellow Sun, Guardian, Levi and Burning come to mind), others that sting and drown you with their strength (Violet, Crumbs and Broken Shells, Maryjane and Only the Sum of).
The only album I haven't regretted buying over the net since Nexus.
Sarah really knows how to, send shock waves through your heart.
Welcome to the latest journey through the world of Fimm. A world where tales of love, loss, redemption, passion, friendship and hope are all told with intelligent, thought provoking, heart-rending, uplifting, beauty.
Our voyage starts, as all voyages do, with a look at the ‘Horizon’. This is a great introduction and a sample of the delights to come – sumptuous melody, soaring strings and a beautiful voice that sings emotional lyrics with a real hook. This song has that indefinable quality that just makes you feel better about yourself.
Over the horizon a ‘Red Yellow Sun’ appears. A moody and magnificent change of pace that draws you in and leaves you in no doubt as to the intensity of feeling being expressed. A display that continues when we meet ‘Maryjane’ – a poignant storybook of a song with a small message of hope.
We are well into our journey now and if you had any doubts about the power of Sarah’s song writing so far, ‘Crumbs and Broken Shells’ will put those firmly to rest. The power of the emotion on display here should make grown men weep! If you are not moved by this song you must have a heart of stone.
A change of texture and colour comes in the slow build that is ‘Violet’. Quite simply, a little guide for life. From the thought-provoking, uplifting lyrics; through the sublime musical arrangement; to the soaring – Pink Floydesque backing vocals (à la Dark Side of the Moon); this is a song the whole world should listen to and take heed of!
With the ‘Guardian’ we have a song of intensely ambitious scope and vision, epically delivered. It makes you glad ‘To be Alive’! Here we move from the Guardian’s magnificent orchestral arrangements to a more intimate setting – like going from an opera in the Royal Albert Hall to a personalised, friendly gig in a warm, dimly lit underground Soho club. So, ‘How does it feel’ now? If only I were “the only one”. . . What beauty.
As we enter the latter stages of our journey we find ‘Only the Sum of’ – a stripped down song that gets to the core of the matter with elegant simplicity and, as ever, the hook that pulls you further in to Sarah’s beguiling world.
On the home straight now and we meet ‘Levi’. Not as instantly captivating as other offerings (to me at least), but it grows on you with every listen. [To be honest, I don’t want an album where I instantly love everything about it. I’d rather give things time to develop and grow. Music shouldn’t just be about instant gratification, it should be like any deeply intense relationship we have; where the more we learn, the more we want to know; and you certainly get that here].
And the end is ‘Burning’, perhaps the most haunting song on the album. The orchestral work is again sublime and perfectly accompanies Sarah’s evocative and captivating voice.
There are those who may feel that Red Yellow Sun is not as unconventional or experimental as previous releases, but make no mistake, this album is a gem. This is not coffee table music, it is music to dive into and seek out the subtle nuances amid the myriad shades of light and dark. [I have listened to this album many, many times and I can honestly say that I hear something new each time – either I’m rubbish at listening, or this is a truly remarkable piece of work. I’ll let you be the judge]. Take a journey to the world of Fimm and I guarantee that you will want to go there again. And again, and again . . .