And He Just Pointed To The Sky...by Peder
Despite the fact that Peder Pedersen has made his name known through his beat-oriented production work with the Prunes and Pelding, on his first solo effort, And He Just Pointed to the Sky..., he takes a much different approach, focusing more on atmosphere and mood than rhythm. In fact, percussion is hardly used during the album's 13 songs. More frequently Peder sticks with simple, haunting arrangements that rely heavily on the B-3 organ, picked guitars, vibraphone, and harmonized background humming, creating something that sounds like the soundtrack to a 21st century noir film, dark and sultry and eerie. Ubiquity labelmate Shawn Lee adds his instrumental expertise on two tracks ("Ache" and "Klart"), as do vocalists Ane Trolle ("White Lilies"), Dean Bowman ("The Sour"), Joy Morgan (the wonderfully haunting "Nothing," on which she sings, straight out of a Tarantino movie, "Someone strangled me/And now I'm dead for sure"), and the blessed-with-a-sweet-falsetto Nino Moschella ("Would You"), working together to make a consistent, strong record perfect for late summer nights, those few hours when the city is quiet before the next day starts up again. And He Just Pointed to the Sky... can get a little slow at times, plodding along with sparse quarter notes and held chords, but before it becomes too much, before it turns into mere background music, Peder brings in drums and kicks up the tempo, like in "White Lilies," which, as the album's center point, acts as the perfect transition between the dark build-up of the first half and the slow release of the second. Peder really shows his stripes here, revealing that he's a versatile and thoughtful artist with plenty of ideas and talent, and can do as much with subtlety and silence as he can with fast programmed beats. So although And He Just Pointed to the Sky... is certainly a departure for him, it's definitely not a step back.
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