• How do we navigate this strange world where we are wedded to our devices, yet so much media are encouraging us to get back to nature? The mixed messages can be frustrating to interpret and live up to. Can we straddle the digital and organic realms without tearing ourselves in two?

     

    Lisa Jên of Welsh group 9Bach ponders this duality in the recently released Anian (Real World Records). Though sung in a language spoken by only about 800,000 people, the spirit of the enchanting songs transcends the tongue.

     

    Amid medieval flutes, dreamy pianos and alternating electronic and tangible beats, Jên’s voice rings like a Disney princess’s. For those generally opposed to the New Age genre, opening track “Llyn Du” is an ideal intro, with its Florence + the Machine-like harp and the menacing Bjork-ish bass. There’s a spookiness to the song, like My Brightest Diamond twisting into a double helix with PJ Harvey.

     

    We recommend 9Bach for their time-traveling ability, flawlessly taking listeners on a journey from ancient times – with its mountainous refrains – to the present, as a respite from the fast pace of modern life. With Anian, the tranquility finds you wherever you are.

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