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Exit North: Book of Romance and Dust

Steve Jansen (ex-member and cofounder of Japan) first began his relationship with Thomas Feiner working on his solo album Slope (2007). In 2014 the pair formed Exit North along with Charles Storm and Ulf Jansson. The resulting album titled Book of Romance and Dust was released in 2018 after four years of working together. It must have been a labour of love because the results are absolutely intoxicating. “Bested Bones” begins the disc with Feiner’s haunting baritone lead vocals with sorrowful violin and piano over a slow and jazzy beat. The treated trumpet adds some really cool tones and the music slowly builds with grandiose intentions and completely succeeds in doing so. “Short Of One Dimension” is another slow affair featuring delicate acoustic guitar work and floating keyboard soundscapes. Although mellow there are many layers to peel back including some fuzzy toned guitar riffs and a soundscape rich in various treatments and keyboards. It’s a majestic sound, one to be listened to on a good pair of headphones preferably while in a relaxed state of mind. A lonely piano begins “Sever Me”, a slightly brooding sound, mellow yet intense when the treatments and effects travel like ripples through a pond. Just sit back and take it all in. This is one of those albums that begs to be played in just the right circumstances. When you do it will be all the more rewarding. “Passenger’s Wake” has a nice mixture of mellow and heavy while “Lessons In Doubt” is a beautifully crafted piece where every note is easily absorbed.

Book of Romance and Dust is really an outstanding piece of art rock that will have a long lasting effect on anyone who chooses to listen. Highly recommended.

The players are:
Thomas Feiner (lead vocals, trumpet, additional piano, additional guitar, harmonium)
Steve Jansen (keyboards, drums, percussion, sound design, backing vocals)
Charles Storm (synthesizers, treatments, guitars, bass, voices)
Ulf Jansson (piano, keyboards)

Max Wulfsson (violin I)
Hanna Eliasson (violin II)
Tuula Fleivik Nurmo (viola)
Jung Hyun Byun (cello)
Hans Adler (double bass)
Mikael Backegård (string conductor)

Track Listing:
1. Bested Bones
2. Short Of One Dimension
3. Sever Me
4. Passenger’s Wake
5. North
6. Lessons In Doubt
7. Spider
8. Losing
9. Another Chance

Added: September 29th 2019
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Band's Official Site
Hits: 799
Language: english

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