by Ashley Eriksson


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As a member of the indie pop band LAKE, Ashley Eriksson has helped to create a small body of work that ranks among the best small-scale pop of the late 2000s. Her first solo album for K Records, Colours, has all the hallmark warmth and spirit of LAKE, but is even more laid-back and intimate. Working quietly and mostly by herself (LAKE bandmate Eli Moore and a few other friends help out here and there), Eriksson taps into a deeply peaceful and tranquil space where music sounds less like a career choice and more like a heart beating or a bird chirping. Built on keyboards and gently strummed guitars, then colored by bells, percussion both machine-derived and organic, horns, and rich vocal harmonies, the songs are simple but so intricately arranged that Van Dyke Parks or Brian Wilson would surely approve. Indeed, a few of the tracks sound like they could be Smile outtakes. Flowing through the center of the arrangements like a mountain stream, Eriksson's soft but still powerful voice is the cherry on top. Anyone who's heard her singing over the end credits of Adventure Time knows she can do cute and sweet like nobody's business, and there are plenty of moments like that here, but she can do mysterious ("Bury the House") and dreamy ("West of the Mountain") just as well. The more developed songs sound the best, but the instrumental interludes are nice, too, and could work well as an audition to score an upbeat indie film. And her cover of Swedish pop crooner Ted Gärdestad's "Ett Stilla Regn" sounds like a lost Nilsson song from The Point, which is high praise indeed. Eriksson's canvas may be small on Colours, but her palette is bright and vibrant. Anyone looking for an album to help them pass the time on a radiant summer day, or keep them company on a chilly early fall evening, will find that it is a perfect companion.

Product Details

Release Date: 07/16/2013
Label: K. Records
UPC: 0789856124527
catalogNumber: 61245
Rank: 279543

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