Golden Apes “Kasbek” – album review

 

I don’t just enjoy discovering artists that I have never heard of before, but learning and understanding their styles and messages are just as important. When I was given the album ‘Kasbek’ by Golden Apes to listen to, I did not know what to expect or hear. It was the vocals of Peer Lebrecht that pricked up my ears. I really don’t like to compare an artist by saying he sounds like this artist or another, because no vocalist wants to hear they sound like somebody else. However, this vocalist sounds like a bunch of talent all mixed into one! A voice that has a mixture of David Sylvian, Marian Gold & Leonard Cohen all merged together. On one of the tracks he comes close to Bowie. So this was what brought me to writing a review of the album. It has the feel of an album that is like a fine wine. A connoisseur would definitely have this album in their collection. The music is neither heavy or light and the vocals fundamentally hold each of the tracks as the instrumentations play subliminally in the background. There is a lot of appeal here. Some addictive qualities to many of the tracks. The first track ‘Oblivion’ is a fine example. The moment it purrs into your ears, you feel familiar territory and sit back and relax as the tune washes over you. It has a very comforting effect. The track ‘Clouds’ Silver Lining’ starts with a lovely vocal entrance. A voice full of emotion and sets the scene beautifully. Soft drumming in the background. You just sense his track with anticipation. A superbly, well-crafted piece of art created perfectly. The quality of the music here is so impressive. The band recognize they are supporting their front man to achieve the desired output. With intense listening and the ability to identify how easy Peer uses his controlled vocals, you can tell he is very skilled in using his voice to perfection. He doesn’t get carried away. A unique skill that brims with confidence. It is fully understandable why Shannon Hemmett, vocalist of Actors agreed to sing on the track ‘Dust & Dew’. Her voice drifts into the song like silk. We have that slight gravelly texture of Peer meandering and then Shannon delivers her response by a voice that dances around his. A wonderful collaboration between these two artists. It’s a very listenable track that you’ll put on repeat. ‘Sleep’ is where we might possibly think that Mr. Bowie has come wafting into this album, even the synths in the background sound similar to something for the album ‘Low’, but you have to listen carefully. I don’t believe for a minute there was any intention of Peer or the band producing a track that was trying to be ‘Bowie’, but I would like to mention, this act has the ability to change its range and direction of music. There is a steady pace across the whole album and whilst it has the sound of one or two genres it could fit; it also has the ability to slot into its own niche genre. It’s a very rich album which has sets its standards and goals high. ‘Kasbek’ has introduced me to a new kind of music that I can identify with and will listen to when I am in a number of moods. I would strongly advise anyone who wants to discover something different and worthy of treating their ears to pick this up asap. It’s an album with contention for one of the best releases of 2019. I really sense that Golden Apes have achieved perfection without realizing it. I found when listening in my car, the album captivated me enough, to stay mellow when in traffic and was mildly surprised that it finished because I felt I wanted more. When listening indoors, the album has a warm ambience. I rate this album highly and suggest others discover this album and put it to the test. It is extraordinary I haven’t heard of Golden Apes before, but now that I have, I’ll be checking out the back catalogue and I hope to see them on tour.

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