Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Pascal Pinon's Quiet Revolution

Pascal Pinon, October, 2009
“... the Icelandic duo known as Pascal Pinon create luscious, minimalistic audible soundscapes that are fiercely intent upon dazzling those who are fortunate enough to stumble across the intimate nature of their work.”  ~ Broden Terry, Made of Chalk
I’ve lived with “Twosomeness”, the new album by the Icelandic duo Pascal Pinon, for about a month now. It has grown on me, in ways which are hard to explain. Putting usual musical categories aside, the music it contains appeals to this listener more on an emotional level than an intellectual one. It also has a strong spiritual element, not in any formal religious sense, but rather as an exploration of sub-conscious archetypes. It is an unashamed celebration of girlishness but not frivolous or juvenile; it meets Robert Graves’ definition of poetry: “That which cannot be improved.”

These twin sisters have been described as having ...a lovely relaxed intimacy about this album, as if you’re overhearing the siblings exchanging whispered secrets.” Another reviewer noted that their music “... is reminiscent of the sacred secular choral music crafted by the brilliant Julianna Barwick.”

Stacey Pavlick, writing in Spectrum Culture, elegantly summed up Twosomeness' appeal:
Twosomeness nestles into the conceit of an album that is populated by just two people – but in doing so they nurture another dyad, that of sender and receiver. To hear it properly, you don’t so much turn up the volume as approach the source: it doesn’t get big, so get small, if you please.”
Tad Machida, writing on the UCLA Radio website, goes even further:
“... Pascal Pinon’s masterful manipulation of “moments” when melodies, mood and rhythm all come together to give you an experience that can only be described as otherworldly. Twosomeness is a sensually wonderful album to listen to. Having listened to this album, I cannot give anything other 10.”
Finally, Juraj Kušnieri, writing for Reykjavík Revisited, started his review of the group's recent show in Bratislava with this intriguing teaser:
“Pascal Pinon’s delicate gig at the main hardcore-anarchistic club in Bratislava was unusual experience of charm and beauty.”
And ended it it with this:
“Pascal Pinon brought much beauty into The Intergalactic Monster. It is going to be one of those gigs that are long remembered. I would not be too surprised if in few years, when Ásthildur and Jófriður – together, or each on her own – will be “really great”, we will, like old veterans, tell our younger friends: “Yes, we saw them at Obluda in 2013, a club with no backstage area, and it was very beautiful!”
   The revolution has begun.

By Professor Batty


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