18 Oct 2021
UsernamePassword

Remember Me? | Join | Recover
Click here to sign in via social networking

Plum Green - Album Review: Somnambulist

25 Sep 2021 // A review by Kev Rowland

Born in a squat in England, raised in New Zealand, and presently residing in Melbourne, here we have the latest release from dream folk artist Plum Green. I have not previously come across any of her other albums, but somehow, I can see I need to undertake some investigations as this is a very special album indeed. Her wonderful vocals are at the forefront of everything she does, often accompanied by her acoustic guitar, yet the vocals are often multi-layered and there are bowed soundscapes which makes for an arrangement with everything channelling her vocals. A variety of different instruments are featured including classical strings and the Melbourne Town Hall Grand Organ, (apparently the largest musical instrument in the Southern Hemisphere it says here).

As soon as I heard this, I was taken back to Talitha Rise and her incredible album, An Abandoned Orchid House, as this has a similar approach, with the clarity of vocals giving us a feeling of fragility, yet the accompaniment has wonderful strength and depth. This is music which must never be played in a car or while operating heavy machinery, as it transports the listener to a different plane and existence, and when it ends there is a real feeling of loss while the listener comes to terms that the journey is over, and we are back to normality. Over the last few years, I have been fortunate enough to come across some incredible singers, and I never cease to be amazed (and angry) at how much incredible talent is ignored by the mainstream media. In a fair world we would all be shouting about this album, Plum Green would be featured on TV and radio, but we all know the world we live in is not fair and musical ability and talent does not mean success.

This is an incredibly thoughtful and thought-provoking album, which lifts us away from the mundane, and helps us understand the world in a totally different manner. No percussion, and often no bass, the different layers of vocals, acoustic guitar, and soundscapes combine to produce something which is simply exceptional. Let us hope that Melbourne soon manages to come out of the horror of Covid (they will soon take the record for the longest lockdown anywhere in the world), and that we see Plum Green and guitarist Daniel Cross back over here playing again, as that promises to be a very special event indeed. To be played on headphones when one has the time to listen, really listen, and for the normal world to just pass on by.

Rating: ( 5 / 5 )
 

Other Reviews By Kev Rowland

Sam Bartells - Single Review: Bring You Down
17 Oct 2021 // by Kev Rowland
Sam Bartells is back with his new single Bring You Down, which finds him taking quite a different approach to Where We'll Go, which also featured Mema Wilda. Whereas he normally sits quite happily within alt country, here we see him using that as a base and then moving in a much rockier direction.
Read More...
Jenny Mitchell - Single Review: Trouble Finds A Girl with Tami Neilson
14 Oct 2021 // by Kev Rowland
The Auckland Folk Festival earlier this year was an embarrassment of riches, with so many great Kiwi artists playing multiple sets, and I spent the weekend trying to soak in as much as possible. There is no doubt that one of the highlights was Jenny Mitchell, who with her sisters Nicola and Maegan, provided warm and emotional country music in a style which seemed very much at odds with her age.
Read More...
Bianca Rae - Single Review: Flower
14 Oct 2021 // by Kev Rowland
There are times when the music world is very small indeed, which is why earlier this year I found myself at The Portland Public House in Auckland to see a singer-songwriter, having been put in contact by a fellow reviewer who is in the UK. Even though Bianca Rae was the support, and everything was running late, she refused to let anything get to her, and I thoroughly enjoyed her set.
Read More...
Blue River Baby - Single Review: Green Cones
14 Oct 2021 // by Kev Rowland
Following on from the single Pay, which I reviewed a few months back, Blue River Baby (BRBB) are back with the second single from their second album, which is due next year. We find them moving much more into a dub style, with Ree Thomson’s wonderfully clear vocals very much the centre of attention.
Read More...
Downfall of Humanity - EP Review: Deceit
10 Oct 2021 // by Kev Rowland
It is not often that a band can say they have had the same line-up for more than 10 years, but Auckland metal act Downfall of Humanity can claim just that. Daniel Carleton (lead vocals), Alex Carleton (guitars, backing vocals), Bryce Patten (guitars, backing vocals), Ben Pegman (bass) and Ben Bakker (drums) have a reputation for always delivering the goods, and I count myself lucky to have caught them a few times in the last year.
Read More...
The Rocky Bay Midnights - Album Review: Songs About People We Know
10 Oct 2021 // by Kev Rowland
The Rocky Bay Midnights are a Waiheke Island-based group who first started some three years ago when Meredith Wilkie (vocals, percussion) and Kyla Dyresen (keyboard/piano) were both independently looking for musicians, to work with, and decided to form a band together. It took quite a while for them to settle on the current line-up of Simon McDowell (drums), Dione Denize (bass) and Julion Wright (guitar, saxophone) and now they have just released their debut album.
Read More...
Iveta & Simone - Single Review: Obsessed
07 Oct 2021 // by Kev Rowland
Although Iveta & Simone have been around for a few years, this single is the first time I have come across them. When it commenced, I felt we were in for some sort of electronic dance music, but I soon realized that in many ways they remind me much more of the Eighties band Yazoo.
Read More...
Shihad - Album Review: Old Gods
07 Oct 2021 // by Kev Rowland
There is no doubt that Shihad are the Kiwi rock band who should have broken America 20 years ago, and if it wasn’t for a series of unfortunate events such as the attack on the Twin Towers, which caused the band to change their name (Shihad being too close to Jihad, but while Pacifier may have seemed a good idea on paper, it wasn’t and they eventually switched back), or accidently upsetting virtually every record label at a showcase gig, then they would have been. The first time I saw Shihad was at Western Springs opening for AC/DC, and there is no doubt that the guys were blown away by the reaction, as it seemed that although everyone was there for the main event, they were all diehard Shihad fans as well, singing along to every song.
Read More...
View All Articles By Kev Rowland

NZ Top 10 Singles

  • COLD HEART (PNAU REMIX)
    Elton John And Dua Lipa
  • LOVE NWANTITI (AH AH AH)
    CKay
  • INDUSTRY BABY
    Lil Nas X feat. Jack Harlow
  • STAY
    The Kid LAROI And Justin Bieber
  • BAD HABITS
    Ed Sheeran
  • SHIVERS
    Ed Sheeran
  • HEAT WAVES
    Glass Animals
  • HAPPIER THAN EVER
    Billie Eilish
  • MEET ME AT OUR SPOT
    THE ANXIETY, WILLOW And Tyler Cole
  • WOMAN
    Doja Cat
View the Full NZ Top 40...
muzic.net.nz Logo
100% New Zealand Music
All content on this website is copyright to muzic.net.nz and other respective rights holders. Redistribution of any material presented here without permission is prohibited.
Report a ProblemReport A Problem