Oh how I like surprises like this one! I try to not listen to album before I get the hard copy on vinyl. I really believe it suppose to be perceived as a whole piece with medium itself and the cover. Music as everything needs its package. Needs cover. We eat with our eyes first, don't we?
I don't know why I liked this cover in first place. It was different. Glass shards was my first thought. Everything here is a bit different also. When I opened package and took the vinyl out of the sleeve to spin it I had the first problem. Where to start? There is no "A" side nor "B" side. I had to check the sleeve for some clues. Sleeve did not helped me at all either as it is a puzzle itself. As a big fan of riddles and adventure video games I was able to solve the mystery. Dots says "This side contains tracks from 1 to 5, other one tracks from 6 to 11". I was staying next to my turntable with the record in my hands for a while without a single move. Suddenly I laughed. My wife was bit concerned. She asked me am I OK. I am, I just fell in love with the piece of vinyl disc without even checking what's on it.
We Will Kaleid describes itself as pop/alternative pop/experimental pop and by this I could expect everything really but not what I got. Not a single imagination I had about it was even close to the giant space, ambient melancholy, emotions, complexity and minimalism of "A Shape of Fading". Sometimes I had a feeling I listen to Lamb, other time it was Bjork, The Knife or Karin Andersson herself. Once it was dark ambient in a best german meaning then gloomy nu-jazz. Just listen to "Bitter Earth", "Fly", "The Hurt" or their version of christmas song "Of a Mind". But somehow in a same time, it is all consistent, there is no feeling of overwhelming of multiplicity of styles.
We Will Kaleid project was built by Jasmina de Boer and Lukas Streich on foundations of Ærial band, discontinued in beginning of 2017. Both members are responsible for electronics, keys, programming etc. but it's Jasmina who sings and Lukas plays drums. And that's all they really need as they wrote all songs themselves, they recorded, produced and mixed them also. As we can read on the inner sleeve all vocals were recorded in a cabin in the woods except song 3. which was recorded somewhere outside in the woods... Self-sufficency.
There are no shards on the cover. Don't even know how I could think of glass shards, now it's so obvious. It's a kaleidoscope. Fits the music and the promise given by the band. On the reverse of it there is a riddle you must spend some time on but then everything is simple. It's like this music, so complex yet so simple. Nice heavy record with labels out of this space. Printed inner sleeve with lyrics keeps the same style. I'm not saying this often but this one couldn't be pressed on colored vinyl. Black is just perfect! And it's limited to 100 copies only. Hurry up!
I love this album. Minimalistic though still keeping its secrets and revealing them slowly. With every another listening this music appears in a different way. We'll see this duet soon on the biggest indie festivals, I'm pretty sure. One of the best debuts of this year!