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Album review: Rebekka Karijord - We Become Ourselves

Rebekka Karijord - We Become Ourselves Rebekka Karijord - We Become Ourselves

Saturday, November 3, 2012
7:00 AM

The Norwegian-born singer-songwriter keeps her heart on her sleeve for an uncompromising, illuminating return.

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Returning to the studio three years after first releasing The Noble Art Of Letting Go, which went on to become a burgeoning success across Europe, Scandinavian songbird Karijord has kept to her principles of raw aesthetics and compelling arrangements.

Strapping little more to her strong but delicate voice than piano, strings, and unintrusive percussion, she has created another beguiling set of songs wearing her heart on their collective sleeve.

Embracing her outsider chic, and confident with it, she produces songs packed with drama and carefully executed, strong-but-lean instrumentation.

The urgent, tribal drum tempo snapped out on thin percussion beneath starchy, shrill organ makes Use My Body While It’s Still Young an evocative, if uneasy, listen, for example.

Oh Brother’s wails and ceremonial, almost shamanic feel is invigorating rather than coruscating, but it’s reined in on Your Love, where woody, clipped strings and piano feather a more celebratory, elemental nest.

There’s echoing vocals and dripping dungeon atmospherics in We Become Ourselves, while the quiet drama of padding bass, piano and whip-like tambourine in Save Yourself casts an ominous pall, only enhanced by casting the rumbling men’s choir against a boys’ angelic notes.

There’s an undeniably monochromatic aspect to her work, but to breathe the humanity and warmth into it that she does is the clearest sign of Karijord’s talent.

3 stars

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