MP3: The Grand Opening - Dark dark dawn

The Grand Opening's new album "Beyond the brightness" is darker, more oblique than anything they've done before. Or perhaps I should say anything he's done before as TGO is, for all intents and purposes, the work of one John Roger Olsson. It's a record of stark minimalism and deceptive simplicity. A bare-bones track such as "Dark dark dawn" manages to say a lot with so, so little. JRO has mentioned to me that he's been getting more and more into ambient/experimental composers such as Tim Hecker, Harold Budd and Brian Eno and it shows. It's those empty spaces between the notes that give the music weight and meaning, that make it effective/affecting. There's an urgency to his vocal delivery, but it's tempered by pauses and second-guessing. He implores "Please intrude" with almost a sense of resignation; it's the other lines that seem more imploring, especially as the notes climb upward. After a short coda with a subtle 2nd guitar, I'm exhausted. Less is always more, doncha know?

The Grand Opening - Dark dark dawn