(06.2007, Ever Records)
Have you ever been charmed to the point that you develop literal butterflies in your stomach? I mean just really get your socks charmed off? Kurr, the debut release from Amiina is soaked in this type of charm. Being the backing strings for the seminal Icelandic powerhouse Sigur Ros, Amiina have simultaneously been brought into the spotlight to many otherwise oblivious listeners and left in the critical shadows because of their associations with the former. The effect produced an unnecessary taste of mediocrity in some reviewer’s mouths, and, on a cursory listen, I was ready to jump on the band wagon of luke-warm appraisal. In my initial haste I neglected the subtle elegance that absolutely enchants these songs. The album is instrumental (though voices as instrumnets are used), but avoids the down-tempo moodiness of most post rock and neo classicalism that Amiina could be grouped with. Amiina's instrumental delicacies are actually quite warm, comforting you like a favourite blanket next to a winter fireplace. Each note of the album has been placed carefully and each instrument added thoughtfully to beautiful results. Kurr is relieving, its fragile layers deftly reaffirming the power of well composed music.