Sunday, December 15, 2019

Albums of the Year # 11 Mega Bog - Dolphine

From July:

A salutary lesson in life is that it's well worth constructing your own myth. It's not as if anyone else is going to bother. One of the best musical representations of this idea I've heard  recently is Dolphine, the latest album from Mega Bog. One of the most arresting records I've heard for a long while and though it's not always easy to hear what Erin Elizabeth Birgy, the artist behind the moniker is getting at, it's delightfully easy to fall under the spell that she casts here.

A low- fi but broad canvas reflection on death and loss, Dolphine walks the line between surreality and accessibility. Birgy moulds her sound from indie touchstones and mainstream favourites, reminding me at points of Suzanne Vega, Laurie Anderson, Joanna Newsom. Sufjan Stevens, Mary Margaret O'Hara, Joni Mitchell and more while always maintaining a voice and vision that is actually quite clearly her own.


There is a more-ish quality to the record that is a delightful characteristic for an album to give when you're listening to it for the first time. It suggests a gift that's going to keep giving, So many of the artists who have captured my interest musically in recent years have been women; Regina Spector, Cat Power, Weyes Blood, Courtney Barnett, US Girls, Aldous Harding, Sharon Van Etten, Cate le Bon, Shana Cleveland. Frankly the list goes on and on. And Mega Bog slots in there nicely with a peculiar warm sensibility that's subtle and distinct from all of them.

I'm not sure just yet how much Dolphine is going to creep up on me in the coming months and how high it's going to feature when I come to compile my close of year list of favourite records. I suspect I'm going to keep on edging it up the Spotify playlist I'm using to prepare for that and it will end up flying pretty high. Despite it's occasionally murky preoccupations it's a record that offers warm consolation to all those of us who have ever been left behind by one that they love that we are never quite alone and that there is always plenty more to live for and much left to learn and relish. It's always great to get that sensation from a record and Dolphine does that for me.

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