Esmerine – Lost Voices
The fifth album from the Montreal chamber rock collective is a beguiling mass of dialled-down post-rock, classical figures and exploratory soundscapes. Led by ex-Godspeed You! Black Emperor and Thee Silver Mt. Zion members Bruce Cawdron and Rebecca Foon, the newly expanded quintet takes flight. Much of Lost Voices' impact is due in no small part to the string arrangements of cellist Foon and Godspeed violinist Sophie Trudeau, who guests on four tracks.
At its most muscular (the driving electric guitars of 19/14) or its most tender (the delicate A Trick of the Light), Lost Voices manages mood and melody with a deft and hypnotic grace. My Mama Pinned a Rose On Me introduces marimba and even here, where texture takes precedence over melody, the whole remains dynamic and taut. Lost Voices takes time, on occasion, to breathe and relax but it steadfastly avoids the indulgence of 'ambient' or wanton noodling. Beyond words, beyond beautiful.