Sunday, November 29, 2020

Albums of The Year # 27 Grimm Grimm - Ginormous

 A total leftfield surprise for me. But an enduring one:

A record I've slowly fallen for rather hard over the last few days is Ginormous the third album from London based Japanese musician Koichi Yamanoha who goes under the Grimm Grimm nom de guerre. I've lsitened to a range of great new records over that time but found myself coming back again and again to this almost despite myself. The sure sign of a great record.

Ginormous is a subtle charmer, whispering and insinuating rather than hammering its points home. It's all the more alluring for this approach, conjuring a soft, fantastic landscape that's reminiscent of the gentlest and oddest moments of Can, Young Marble Giants, Beach House and  Cate Le Bon's back catalogue.

High praise indeed, but Ginormous is worthy of it. It manages the remarkable feat of being both tender and durable and it's already a record I look forward to returning to and getting to know better over the coming weeks and months. Imbued with the loveliest melodies and cadences but shifting mood with the upmost subtlety from track to track, it's one for sensitive Indie couples to tuck the kids into bed to and kickback to before they themselves hit the sack.

Yamanoha describes the objective behind the album as trying to 'sound like a wedding and a funeral at the same time.'  Switching between his native tongue and his adopted one at will and inviting a number of like-minded female vocalists such as Paz Maddio and Laetitia Sadler to leaven the mix, the cumulative effect of their joint endeavours is incredibly compelling as you make your way through this enchanted forest of a record.

The tracks here function almost as nursery rhymes or lullabies, consistently bedded on a warm torrent of organ driven melodies. Determinedly intimate and idiosyncratic it constantly varies its mode of delivery and the individual tracks are quite different from one another yet knit together almost seamlessly. A small but perfectly formed arecord. An album of childlike wonder to clutch to your heart.

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