♫♪  Andrea Balency - Around And Back And Around

Andrea Balency is a Paris-born, London-based composer, musician and singer, who is currently a touring member of UK outfit Mount Kimbie. She also appeared on their latest LP Love What Survives as a guest vocalist on track “You Look So Certain (I’m Not Sure)”. Now, Balency presents a succinct solo EP titled Around And Back And Around, inspired by both classical music and the human body and its movements. At its core is the cello, an instrument which to Balency “feels human”.

On the opener “Downmotion”, the layered string ensemble spirals downwards disorientingly, while the second track, “Walking”, develops far beyond the cello (although it is ever-present). Here, Balency enlists Mount Kimbie member Kai Kompos as a guest vocalist for a piece of orchestral kraut-rock which feels like a Mount Kimbie & Oliver Coates collab (which I think would work in real life too). “Tombling”, the closing and my favourite track, is perhaps the most visceral and full of movement, as Balency’s repetitive lyrics intertwine with cascading cello phrases to mesmerizing effect. There is discomfort here and the arrangement seems almost frail, as if it could fall apart at any moment, but Balency’s mantra-like vocals are somewhat self-assuring, and a source of resolve: “Take me back, take me back, take me back, take me back, take me back” she recites at the end…

While Balency only labels these three pieces “the first outcomes of experimentation”, to me, this collection feels like quite a clear statement of intent: this is truly exciting and wonderful music, and we’re in luck because Balency promises more later this year. Until then, enjoy these:

Chocolate Grinder

CHOCOLATE GRINDER is our audio/visual section, with an emphasis on the lesser heard and lesser known. We aim to dig deep, but we’ll post any song or video we find interesting, big or small.

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