Butterflies & Graves

In the tangled vines of hanging drone, intertwining, thorny passages are a secluded relief for those who have suffered; those longing for a shelter to find quiet rest and solitude. Yes, singing relieves some of the pain, the expression in the voice still alive and attentive, but every uttered syllable is also a reminder of the dramatic turn of events. The syllables are drops of blood that ooze out the torturous past, turning the grass a deep crimson against the approaching black of the night. Abandon is calling.

In her despair, the soft rush of the wind ripples against the smooth, green leaves of velvet, dappled with the translucent late evening sunlight. Cream coloured butterflies take flight, magnolia wings tainted in melancholia. As beautiful as it is, the late dusky light could also be a sickly, yellow light, the sun seeping out the last of the day before it turns its affections upon someone new. The sick light burns, sweating out a bad relationship as if it was a virus holding the soft, supple skin hostage; the wrath of a nasty fever, poisoned perhaps by a trickle of river water.

David Wenngren, of Library Tapes, and Sweden’s singer-songwriter Sara Forslund are Birch And Meadow. Wenngren’s quiet, reflective tones of drone befit Forslund’s calmly sombre vocals, her syllables leaking out of a tired, open wound, discharging tears of blood that weep with a deep emotional pain. It’s a drone that smudges the thin, pale glass of recovery, and it is obstinate in its single shape and colour, under which many shades are observed. Being a drone, minimal movement is at its beating heart, the pieces sustaining under repetitive duress as if it was a confused thought still stuck on that special someone. A stable, sustained drone can prove itself capable of a true emotional intensity, despite its intentional lack of movement. You could argue that a single drone has more emotion within it than a standard song with plenty of chord transitions; it’s a strange paradox, because if you look past the surface, there is often a lot more happening within the subtle drone. The key to peeling away the deeper experience is probably just patience.

I was born on a rainy day, but I died when the sun shone.

A crisp, ambient-drone layer cocoons itself around the female voice; the drone is focused on intricacy, leaving behind only a filmy residue, like the powder of sleep that settles at the corners of the eye, as fragile as the paper-thin, kaleidoscopic pattern painted on a butterfly’s wings. Brambles pierce and stab at the past tense, the skin never quite healing the cuts and lacerations that they leave behind. The leafy static buries the sound of approaching footsteps. Crackles are woven into the dramatic, tense sound, the music creaking like strained spider-webs of breaking glass. The feather-soft vocals help to balance out the tragedy and the treasure; butterflies and graves.

The drones are bright, pale thorns of shattered love; they coil electrical spikes around the prone victim, twisting the emotional agony against the vocal with remorseless, cold-blooded efficiency. The whispered vocals are fragile against the tyrannical beast, unprotected against the thorny brush of desolation and desperation, but you can’t deny the drone’s hushed beauty.

Her vocals have been dumped, mercilessly thrown away like a lost song; the possibilities have been dashed. Her vocals just want the pain to come to an end.

I will try to find it again

A couple of words breathe the thin air of hope on an ill-lit evening, refusing to admit defeat, but the slight delay in the pronunciation is proof that she does not quite believe. The drone is a dry, skeletal leaf that repeatedly crackles the more it is trodden on, the lyrics fragmenting just after they’re voiced, disappearing into cold thoughts like icy, refrigerated air. It’s the very real sound of a broken heart in motion; a season’s tragedy that trudges silently beside the jilted.

The drone is suffocated in black water, giving a new meaning to digging your own grave. Her vocals are tormented and troubled, with lips that cannot kiss anymore. As the realisation sinks in, the drones wrap themselves around their victim like a cold blooded reptile constricting the life out of its unfortunate prey, succumbing to a drone of despair, without any kind of rescue in sight. It is unrelenting. The melancholia is a beautiful dagger, a staggering soul that unearths charcoal grey stones, fit for constructing a shallow tomb close to the river. They turn in the palm, somehow seeming to claim an insight into the future. Perhaps the seclusion, the solitude that beckoned among the tangled boughs, was just the resting place for an unmarked grave.

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