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Album Leaf - Between Waves

  by Keith How

published: 6 / 9 / 2016

Album Leaf - Between Waves
Label: Relapse Records
Format: CD


Sparse but haunting latest album from the Album Leaf, the project of singer-songwriter Jimmy LaValle

I have always enjoyed listening to the Album Leaf. The band is actually multi-instrumentalist Jimmy LaValle who turned his solo studio project into a fully- fledged group. On his latest release 'Between Waves' LaValle is accompanied by Matt Resovitch (viola,synths), Brad Lee (bass, trumpet) and Dave LeBleu (drums) who complete the band’s line up. My first interaction with the Album Leaf was the release of the gorgeous 'In a Safe Place' in 2004 - an album full of air and light. What followed were the equally splendid 'Into the Blue Again' and 'A Chorus of Storytellers', both fine records that seemed to go unnoticed. Since 2010 LaValle self-released an EP, 'Forward/Return', before turning his talented hands to film and TV scores. 'Between Waves' finds LaValle bringing to bear all his years of experience in the different fields of recording together on this truly sumptuous release. In keeping with the title 'Waves' reflects the movement of the ocean. Beautiful soundscapes rise and fall, ebb and flow with ease. Strange beats leap from speaker to speaker while ethereal synths provide a gentle ambience. Throughout the recording the deep sub bass holds everything together. In keeping with the previous records vocals are kept to a minimum. The album opens with two instrumentals, 'False Dawn' and 'Glimmering Lights', which are moody, atmospheric and totally modern. A feature of previous Album Leaf recordings has been a sense of space in the restrained and minimal mix. LaValle employs the same techniques here. On 'Lost in the Fog', for instance, guitar and brass interplay beautifully. Brad Lee’s trumpet echoes the atmospheric moments of Arve Hendricksen before the track cleverly segues into 'Between Waves'. LaValle’s wistful vocals carry you out on the blissful pillow of sound and has you reaching for the repeat button. Delicate and totally engaging, 'Between Waves' is a major work and a sonic masterpiece that is full of class.

Track Listing:-
1 False Dawn
2 Glimmering Lights
3 New Soul
4 Back to the Start
5 Wandering Still
6 Never Far
7 Lost in the Fog
8 Between Waves
9 Forever Drive
10 Synthesis
11 Parameters
12 Ambo
13 Never Far (Dntel Remix)
14 False Dawn (Lorna Dune Remix)
15 Back to the Start (Daedelus Remix)
16 Between Waves (The One Am Radio Remix)
17 New Soul (Keith Sweaty Remix)

Band Links:-

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A Chorus of Storytellers (2010)
Expansive-sounding pop on first rate fifth album from Californian act The Album Leaf, the first to be recorded as a group rather than as a solo project by multi-instrumentalist Jimmy LaValle
Into The Blue Again (2006)
In A Safe Place (2004)

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