Marcus Fjellstrom – Skeletikon

Posted: 5 August 2017 in Albums
Tags: , , , ,

Christopher Nosnibor

Fractal, stripped back strumming and spacious strings define the compositions Skeletikon. Having misplaced the press release, I know next to nothing about Fjellstrom’s purpose or intention with Skeletikon.

‘Born out of shattered dreams and an obscured vision of the future, Skeletikon is a delirious yet lucid exploration of the farthest and most conflicted reaches of the heart, teeming with confusion, passion, and ghostly shadows. Being no conventional composer in any way, Marcus stumbles further down his musical domain of detuned orchestral (re-)arrangements and pain-inducing synth passages, arriving at a most unique and personal result.’ So says the blurb accompanying the album.

Across the album’s ten compositions, Fjellstrom explores all of the essential elements, namely texture and tone, atmospherics and dynamics.

‘Aunchron’ is a light, lilting folksy composition that in some respects invites comparisons to early 90s Swans in the way it builds. But it’s a magnificently multifaceted piece, which shifts and glides supply though a series of transitions which head in various directions over the course of its six-minute duration, by turns cascading gently over rippling chimes and rolling through delicate thunder.

‘Skeleton Dance 2’ is dark, tense and atmospheric in a brooding, difficult way: it gives way to the lilting yet urgent acoustic strumming of ‘Modulus’. Dark clouds rumble as they gather under tremulous strings on ‘Arboretum’: less a sonic representation of the breeze through the leaves on the trees in Spring, and more of a haunted forest with growling, marauding hunters lurking in the undergrowth.

Skeletikon is one of those albums which never stays still, which slowly trickles around a succession of haunting sonic spaces and does so incredibly deftly. As such, its impact is subtle to the point of being barely perceptible for the most part. Skeletikon is sparse, and reaches in by stealth.

The album closer ‘Boy With Wound’ is a haunting, creepy composition, and while it employs myriad classic tropes common to music which is designed to instil certain sense of dread, of trepidation, it’s also a musical journey through a series of tense moods and nerve-jangling tension.

Skeletikon is not an album to enjoy, per se, but one to experience at leisure and to slowly absorb. It’s an album with the capacity to affect the listener, and to effect the psychological axis upon which they ordinarily exist.

Marcus Fjellstrom – Skelektion

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