Sunday, September 09, 2007

Album Review: New Buffalo - Somewhere, Anywhere

On ‘Somewhere, Anywhere’, New Buffalo (a.k.a. Sally Seltmann) has decided to go back to the basics. While her debut album ‘The Last Beautiful Day’ was full of samples and electronic beats, the majority of the tracks were, this time, written on Seltmann’s antique Thurmer piano. As a result, Seltmann’s new album is a stripped-back listen, which feels incredibly intimate, as many of the tracks being nothing more than vocals and piano.

The fact that the songs are often so bare in their instrumentation highlights the brilliant song-writing that is present here; while in many albums, subtleties can easily be lost behind over-production and samples, this isn’t a problem for New Buffalo. On album highlights such as ‘City And Sea’ and ‘Versay’, it almost sounds as if you’re listening to a live performance right inside her studio.

Seltmann, a multi-instrumentalist, has said that she found it more of a challenge to focus solely on composing on the one instrument. If this is what she produces when she limits herself to focusing on one small area of her ability, then I really hope she does more of the same for her next effort.

Somewhere, Anywhere is out now through Remote Control

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