Jana Beltran, electroacoustic guitar, vocals; Vesna Godler, el. bass, vocals: Jošt Drašler, double bass, el. bass; Vid Drašler, drums; Klemen Bračko, viola; Barja Drnovšek, violin; Bojan Cvetrežnik, violin
All Strings Detached return with “Septet,” their most alluring and powerful album to date. Recorded with an expanded 7-piece lineup featuring a taut rhythm section and atmospheric string arrangements, the new album gorgeously refines the duo’s sonic explorations of shadowy landscapes and hard fought love.
Founded in 2014 by Jana Beltran (vocals, electroacoustic guitar) and Vesna Godler (vocals, electric bass) their two previous albums, “Heavy Rain” (2014) and “There’s Something Painful About the Pearls” (2017) were enthusiastically greeted by audiences and media, and established the duo as a compelling new voice on the Slovenian scene. In age of maximalist overload, All Strings Detached leaned in a decidedly different direction. Often hushed and always spacious, the duo’s sound combined the classic songwriting virtues of Cohen or Faithfull with a dark, contemporary minimalism that often asked the listener to complete the story for themselves.
While “Septet” in no way forsakes Beltran’s and Godler’s previous aesthetic, the album’s well-chosen collaborators and next level performances and songwriting have certainly led to something wide-open and new. It is a vividly textured and deeply felt recording. The rhythm section of Jošt Drašler (double bass, electric bass) and Vid Drašler (drums) subtly enhance and enlarge these quietly passionate songs and the string trio of Klemen Bračko (viola, arrangements), Barja Drnovšek (violin) and Bojan Cvetrežnik, (violin) provide haunting atmospheres and a complex, seductive melodicism. Produced and mixed by Chris Eckman (The Walkabouts, The Strange) and recorded live, without overdubs at Bear Tracks Studio by Robi Bulešić, the album captures the power and dynamics of an accomplished band exploring their music together, in real time. It is ambitious and vibrant. An album of the heart, that doesn’t easily leave your head.
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