True Bypass

True Bypass

Written by: DR on 15/12/2010 16:47:48

Chantal Acda (Sleepingdog, Chacda) and Craig Ward (The Love Substitutes, iH8 Camera, A Clean Kitchen Is A Happy Kitchen, ex-dEUS and Kiss My Jazz) first met on an aeroplane that was headed for Glasgow, and performed together on stage later that night. And so True Bypass was born. The self-titled album from this duo was written/recorded in various places: a farmhouse in Hoegaarden, a bedroom in Portland or a studio Mechelen.

I've already mentioned four contries, and they seem eager to get that point across in their bio, suggests are 'worldly', free-spirited people. I don't know about you, but that carries implications to me regarding their music: folsky acoustic guitar, lush female vocals and lyrical imagery about nature and stuff. My pre-conceptions about True Bypass largely turned out to be true (their lyrics are centred around more than just nature). Chantal Acda handles most of the vocals, adopting an ethereal style that ties in sweetly with the airy acoustics without ever threatening to sound too harsh or unpleasant - occasionaly Ward will offer backing vocals, but rarely as anything more than to contrast with a heavier voice.

They limit the instrumental end of their sound to airy, lofty, gently-plucked acoustic guitars, sometimes a piano, and even a softly struck drum. Even though it is only nine-songs long, because they rarely try to deviate from the folksy style it sounds rather samey. Some may like that, and instead view it as a solid cohesive album rather than as a collection of songs.

"The Lake" is one of the album highlights, initially I suspected this is because it's the first track, and I was therefore fresh to this sound, but after repeated listens it's still the song that sticks out the most. However, the remainder of the album flows together to become one long, albeit it caressing, listen. The positivity and gentle-nature of "True Bypass" can lull you into a dream if you relax, close your eyes and listen to it, so for that I'll ignore the lack of truly memorable moments and it award a:

7

Download: The Lake
For The Fans of: Balmorhea meets Bon Iver?, folk music
Listen: Myspace

Release Date 15.09.2010
Jezusfactory Records

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