Review: Moss Freed Project - What Do You See When You Close Your Eyes? Album Launch at Vortex



Review: Moss Freed Project - What Do You See When You Close Your Eyes? Album Launch
(Vortex. 6th March 2013. Review by Rob Edgar)


What Do You See When You Close Your Eyes is the new album by the Moss Freed Project on the Babel label. Launched at the Vortex on 6th March, it's a little unusual in that it features creative responses to the music from writers and poets, three of whom were there for live recitals of their work (James Millar, Joe Dunthorne, and Hanan al-Shaykh).

If Moss's Let Spin project brought to mind garage band alternative rock blended with intelligent jazz craftsmanship, this outing takes more of a lilting, folksy approach whilst retaining the psychedelic atmosphere that makes up much of Freed's music. which also has a narrative quality (which Moss hadn't noticed until listening to the masters).

The music, for the most part, had an impressionistic texture with melodies floating around the canvas of Freed's compositions, interlocking gently before breaking apart again with Freed's electric guitar often set on a crunchy distorted tone and vocalist/violinist Alice Zawadzki's voice floating over the top as she harmonised her vocal lines on violin.

That's not to say that the music was all wispy and delicate, Ruth Goller's bass guitar was compelling and grooving making for some exciting interplay with saxophonist Kenji Fenton and drummer Marek Dorcik could propel the music forward or add just the right touch to the lighter moments.

The part that really seemed to pique the audience attention was The Angel when Beirut born author Hanan al-Shaykh read her story about a dinner party, a heroin addict and an “angel”. The music she had been inspired by was calm, airy and balmy and had the audience in complete silence throughout.

There was so much to explore and take in during the course of the night that it begs repeated listening. I very much look forward to getting my hands on a copy of the album.

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