Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Julianna Barwick - The Magic Place (2011, Asthmatic Kitty)
RIYL = Eluvium, Grouper, Sigur Ros
Julianna Barwick, after releasing two indescribably gorgeous EPs, has finally graced us with this, her first full length album. According to Barwick, The Magic Place is named after a cavernous Louisiana farm tree from her youth, one whose twisting trunk and branches created a series of hollows – or rooms – with which you could enter and lay about in. On her debut (feels odd to say in 2011), Barwick manages the same effect with her gauzy, multi-layered vocals, wrapping them around each other in a swaddling quilt of sound – something you can enter and lay about in. It’s paralyzing in a way, it’s so beautiful. Of course, if you’ve listened to Barwick’s music in the past, this is no surprise. Her music is the kind that makes you want to stop everything else you’re doing (blinking, breathing) and just soak in the pure magnificence of tone that she’s created. Her voice is as close to angelic as I can imagine the human voice sounding. And The Magic Place does exactly what you wanted her previous two EPs to do – it extends. May not be possible to create something prettier than this.
Julianna Barwick - The Magic Place