mon 14/10/2019

CD: Lapland - Lapland | reviews, news & interviews

CD: Lapland - Lapland

CD: Lapland - Lapland

Brooklyn musician appears with an early Album of the Year contender

Lapland showing off a woozy vision of the world

Lapland is one bearded bloke called Josh Mease who lives in New York. He makes his music in his home studio. That’s the back story and it’s not a good one, especially in an age when a voracious variety of media demand a narrative to go with their music. Mease isn’t a desperate visionary, living on the edge of his sanity, nor is he a photogenic teenager making music to honour a relation dying of cancer, nor is he anything in between. In point of fact, we don’t know much about what he is. All we have is a luscious set of songs comprising the loveliest album 2014 has yet produced.

If Lapland recall anything it’s the high days of chill-out music, a lazy style that developed in the 1990s for listening to on Balearic beaches on ecstasy or late at night after returning from nightclubs, a music woozy with its own cuteness, as with the gorgeous Air (when at their best). Lapland, however, only has a toe dipped in this. What makes his music work is the ability to construct knock-out songs, somewhere between Fleetwood Mac and Burt Bacharach, albeit through the prism of light psychedelia. They are joyful things, smeared with gentle haziness. Sometimes, as on “Memory”, they have a touch of George Harrison’s most spaced Beatles numbers (think “Blue Jay Way”) but at others the listener is dragged off to pleasing, oddball terrain redolent of a David Lynch dream sequence, as on the waltzing instrumental “Fountains”.

The whole thing benefits from the sweetest melodic guitar work - twangy background odysseys, country fret-work or neat acoustic picking – but, again, that’s only the icing on the cake. What makes Lapland an essential album is that, whether the listener is fan of film soundtracks, exotic electronica, Seventies singer-songwriters, Sixties pop or cheesy easy – or a whole host of other styles - there’s an absolute banquet to get stuck into here.

Overleaf: watch the video for "Where Did It Go?"

Knock-out songs, somewhere between Fleetwood Mac and Burt Bacharach


Editor Rating: 
Average: 5 (1 vote)

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