The Guardian Review: Jherek Bischoff – Composed

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Here’s a lovely review of Jherek Bischoff’s Composed in today’s Guardian paper…

Jherek Bischoff plays in bands – he’s a member of Parenthetical Girls and a bassist for Amanda Palmer – and produces music; he also writes film soundtracks and scores for dance pieces. On Composed, his debut album, he wears all these hats at once, creating a collection of lavishly orchestrated pop songs that throb with expressionistic drama, by turns romantic, playful and faintly sinister. Violins swoop, slide and scratch across pirouetting flutes, a roguish glockenspiel and jittery percussion; and though the arrangements are sumptuous enough to work as instrumentals, they’re made more characterful still by a plethora of guest singers. David Byrne is a swooning roué amid the tropical swirl of EyesCaetano Veloso sounds creamy and graceful against the galumphing percussion of The Secret of the Machines; while Dawn McCarthy of Faun Fables breathes witchy incantations in the thrillingly doom-struck Insomnia, Death and the Sea. Occasionally, Composed sounds indulgent, when Bischoff succumbs to syrupy, symphonic cliche; even so, its ambition and singularity are intoxicating.

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