With half of 2012 already over (really? How did that happen?), it’s far enough into the year to actually have a selection of albums from which to choose for this first topic. While I can already guess what album will be my favourite released this year – Ben Folds Five’s new album due out in a few months time – this album is not yet finished, so the album I choose for this will likely be second favourite for the year, which is an odd thing to realise already.
But I digress. There are many albums I could choose from these past six months, including (but not limited to) Rufus Wainwright’s upbeat return to pop music with Out Of The Game, Chairlift’s quirky but danceable Something, Glen Hansard’s intimate and touching Rhythm and Repose, and the self-titled album by Rocket Juice & The Moon, the funky collaboration between Damon Albarn, Flea, and Tony Allen.
But the album which takes it out, for me, is the self-titled debut album by Storm Corrosion, the collaboration between Opeth’s Mikael Åkerfeldt, and Steven Wilson, solo artist and frontman of Porcupine Tree, Blackfield, and numerous other projects. Despite their musical backgrounds consisting mostly of metal and progressive rock, this album, which for me can only be described as beautiful (if not a little haunting), is a very quiet affair, mostly ambient and meditative, with flourishes of orchestral sounds thrown in, and barely any drums at all (which gives you an idea of just how quiet we are talking). The album consists of six songs, all averaging around seven to ten minutes, and despite the song lengths, there is something entrancing about this music that stops you from becoming bored.
Below is my favourite song on the album, Ljudet Innan. It’s long, but listen to it in full and you’ll see why I describe this album as beautiful:
If you really want to treat yourself to a music experience, play this album at high volume from start to finish, lie down in the dark, and let the music wash over you. You won’t regret it, I promise.
What is your favourite album of the year so far?