In our nonstop, frenzied world of bright lights and blaring sirens, the cool shadows and subtle romance of Chandeen’s Echoes come as a very welcome respite. Unfolding at its own deliberate, introspective pace, Echoes weaves a gorgeous tapestry of heavenly female voices and hypnotic keyboards, moody cello and rhythmic acoustic guitar.
Most of the songs on Echoes deal in mystery and magic, lost loves and waking dreams. One of my favorites is “Impressions — La Fruite de la Lune”, which brings the twilight vision described in Oscar Wilde’s lyrics to dusky, jasmine-perfumed life. A meditative acoustic guitar begins the track, soon set into soaring flight by Antje Schulz’s lovely, fragile, innocent voice, floating lost and lonely above the desolate landscape painted by Harald Lowy’s dark synth textures. By the end, the guitar’s hypnotic rhythm has almost lulled you to sleep as the shimmering synths sparkle like stars and the strings swell around you, perfectly evoking the humbling immensity of the night sky. Another standout track is “A Dream,” whose synth drones and entrancing female voice fill your senses, surrounding you with liquid warmth as you float into the pleasant dislocation of William Blake’s intoxicating dream-lyrics.
All in all, Chandeen’s Echoes is another fine album from one of the founders of European ethereal/heavenly voices music. The only real complaint I have is that it’s rather short — just 39 minutes of shadowed romantic bliss.