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Music Review

Anja Garbarek - Smiling & Waving

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Virgin - 2001 – 39 minutes

With a jazz composer Dad, childhood interest in Brian Eno records and a drama college education, Oslo's Anja Garbarek was never destined to be the next big thing of Nordic pop. Her third album however, should see her rightly crowned as the queen of dark delights.

Like a soulmate said some years earlier, it's oh so quiet as orchestral sweeps and smoky basslines combine for everything from 40's movie themes ('And Then') to off keel sea shanties ('The Diver'). And with help and hush from the likes of former Talk Talk frontman Mark Hollis, there's an eerie solace in every whispered line. The album's centrepiece, 'Stay Tuned', sounds like a confession in a phone box at the end of the world.

An album to put you to sleep – but for all the right reasons.

Harry Guerin

Tracklisting: Her Room – The Gown – Spin The Context – Stay Tuned – You Know – Big Mouth – The Diver – That's All – And Then – It Seems We Talk

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