Artist: Evelien Van Den Broek
Title: False Memories
Keywords: electronic alternative experimental female vocals pop Amsterdam
“Evelien is a composer, singer and songwriter based in Amsterdam (NL). She combines experimental electronica pop with classical music and sound art. She writes for film, modern dance, live performance and visual art.”
…now that the official info is out of the way, let’s dive directly into this album, shall we?
Like slimy things that are wet and slippery this release opens up. They crawl or slide in the ears and drag in a favorable, less abstract sounding track in which Evelien van den Broek sings in a Bjork-ish fashion with her own authentic kind of voice. With a beat and playful approach of synth sound she establishes a truthfully exciting tune.
With a big beat she comes more into her own peculiar style with ‘CREATUREs’, a cool track which sounds like a comfortable eclectic mix in which her creativity seem to have glued avant-garde and electronic pop together, a nice match for a theatrical collaboration that is fun & yet bizarre. She sings about the millions of purple creatures discussing her daily life, a thing you won’t come up with if it isn’t a truthful fact in a person’s daily life. Evelien comes across here like a self convinced narrator that makes the extraordinary situation into a believable one. She doesn’t sound like she belongs in a lunatic assylum, in fact she sounds so strong in delivering her context over here, that anyone doubting her lyrics of this false memory should probably be wearing a straight jacket in some house for the mentally insane!
‘TWIn’ is next, sounding rather wonderful, combining a moody but lovable trombone and a stringed instrument. The influence of the Icelandic songstress is roaming around strongly, as if Evelien wrote it with the famous songstress in mind. Yet, Evelien her voice sounds more English, crystal clean and easily hitting the right tones that makes all the words clearly understandable. A thing that’s not easy to do with this way of singing / performing and even the best (perhaps on purpose or not) might fail in being clear lyric-wise…but not Evelien as she ules every letter, word and all the formed sentences! If you want to know what the intriguing song is about, you should just hear it & all becomes clear. No need to see a booklet to read the lyrics ida rare thing, saves printing ink too!
With ‘BREATHe’ the artist throws herself in the deep depth of experimental voice art. A style of avant-garde that I really seem to enjoy personally. Here she manages to give me the feeling of going up and down in flowing motions, sliding over a non existing slide in which her beautiful voice clearly shines as a wonderful wonder that defies gravity and lack of imagination. Beautiful and honest, picking us up with a arising flair and setting us back to the ground with a kind touch of a intriguing angel; it’s fair to say that I love BREATHe.
Evelien shakes up her album with a contagious sounding BIRTh, a track that musically is cleverly smart, bringing a freedom feel that comes with sounds that are highly original, something that flirts with the sounds of a side freak show and a top act in the piste of a artistic circus. It’s a track that would be difficult to recreate in all ways; music, vocals, lyrics, performance style and the amazing togetherness of it all! Another strong complex work to cherish and discover!
More experimentally channeling challenges come with her interesting sounding ‘MOUTh’. Evelien’s use and choice of sound keeps the ears twinkling, she manages to creates another exciting work, one that wouldn’t sound out of place on Björk’s Homogenic, but she gives it her own classic cartoonish touch and feel (soundwise) in combination with her sensitive theatrical vocal style. It feels like something on the edge of music and art.
THROw throws in the squeaky trombone to compliment the rhythm in which Evelien sings her song upon. Halfway the track speed up, pushing both the artist as well as the music towards lunacy, before calming down one last time. A song named LANDSPo sounds more like a ‘vespertine’ themed work, with Christmas bells and a winterish fairy tale atmosphere, one in which the artist maneuvers itself grandly while singing like a classical story teller.
FLAMe spices up the energy and eccentric electronica again, making it a rattling sensation in which Evelien’s voice is the shining star of attention. It feels like the soundtrack of a lively performed alternative musical. It swipes up the attention with a twirling almost warrior like precision. With a rattling rhythm and soldier-like approach Evelien establishes another false memory in ‘JAPAn’ and nobody is complaining.
The final touch of the album, the dreamy sounding FLOATh feels like a classic Disney moment. It made me think visually of a romanticized version of Mary Poppins floating away by holding onto her umbrella. But song wise also of classics like the singing in Alice in wonderland, Cinderella and doorknobs and broomsticks. It’s s nice and lovable ending for this fine album, one in which we can clearly hear a lot of the potential skills & talents that the artist has. From intelligent song constructions, vocal abilities to sound playfulness.