Sketches for Albinos - Red
Reviewed by Dave on 30th January 2007
Hailing from Iceland, Sketches for Albinos is a one man band comprised entirely of Matthew Collings, ‘Red’ represents Sketches first full length album, having previously released a self titled EP.
The ten tracks on ‘Red’ are individually beautiful, combine them and what you get is something wonderfully brilliant. At times quiet, slow and methodical there is the occasional song that is louder, faster and more chaotic, each track has its own distinct sound and each one tells a story.
Matt has been polishing the album for over a year, and it shows. Every track sounds lovingly crafted and it feels like it’s at the highest level it could be before it was released.
Being post-rock/electronica, and being from Iceland I have to draw comparisons to Sigur Ros, something I am sure that Matt won’t mind. Like Sigur Ros each Sketches song creates a glorious soundscape for the artist to draw the listener into, Sigur Ros aren’t the only obvious influence though, there are on occasions things that sound very much like Godspeed You Black Emperor.
All of the tracks are instrumental, some with pre-recorded vocals weaved in and others with the odd, random noise, every time you hear a track it’s like hearing it for the first time because you are able to pick out something you missed last time.
One of my favourite tracks from the album is ‘Crow, Lights & Melody Loops’ with its upbeat sounding instrumentals it hides the yearning behind the music that is evident on a second or third listen. Another favourite is ‘Rony Schneider’ a somewhat bleak track in comparison to ‘Crow, Lights & Melody Loops’ it is stark and intricate and features in the background, barely audible, what sounds like a family in their home, with children playing and adults talking, whilst a beautiful piano piece plays over them.
Like I said, each of the ten tracks on ‘Red’ is an individual masterpiece and I’ve found myself listening to it over and over, each time trying to hear something new or hear the track in a different way. I really can’t say enough good things about this album, nor do I feel I can do it justice in a review, you really have to hear this for yourself.
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