Tuesday, 12 November 2013

ROBIN PAHLMAN - EP REVIEW

Robin Pahlman - Robin Pahlman EP (Monkey Records) 
Robin Pahlman - Robin Pahlman EP

Release Date: 15th November 2013

Here's an odd one for you. Finnish fella Robin Pahlman used to be a member of Agent Kooper but a while back he eschewed the electric guitar, adopted the acoustic version and relocated to Seattle, WA to write gentle, wistful folk songs. This EP represents a new start for Pahlman and it's a privilege to be able to get in on the ground floor with this music. Opening with 'Miss Lonelyhearts', Pahlman has a Royksoppian (it's a word, get over it) quality despite his instrumentation being largely acoustic guitar, banjo and muted horns. Pahlman's voice is smooth, almost chewy and, if t'were a food, t'would be a dense caramel - t'is that good. 'Ghosts' has an oddly upbeat beginning for a song about dead folk but the sparse, expansive sounds that Pahlman creates with simple instrumentation are nothing short of enthralling. Third track 'Waves' is potentially named after my local pub but in all likelihood it's probably related the motion of the ocean and the music has a gentle but persistent rhythm that mirrors the rolling seas beautifully.

Disturbingly, straight after a song called 'Waves' comes a song called 'Man Over Board' - there's that famously dark Finnish humour. Once again, Pahlman creates space and distance with minimal instrumentation whilst creating an aura that makes you want to stare out to sea and think of all the mermaids that never learned to swim (seriously, the sea bed must be littered with them). Finishing up with 'Dreams In The Headlights' suggest perhaps a track too far for this EP as it's an overtly middle of the road affair that does nothing for my senses but an 80% hit rate on an EP is good enough for me and so consider me a fan of the Finn.


Live Dates:

16th November - Black Horse Inn, Vienna
18th November - Krone, Darmstadt, Germany
19th November - POP IN, Paris
20th November - Le Sombrero Cafe, Amiens, France
21st November - LR6, Brussels
23rd November - Barrock, Maastricht
24th November - Hannekes Boom, Amsterdam
26th November - House Show, Leverkusen
27th November - KINGKONGCLUB, Berlin

28th November - Laika, Berlin

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