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Old Lost John | Faceless

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Folk: Alternative Folk Folk: Alternative Folk Moods: Mood: Brooding
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by Old Lost John

Dark, brooding folk with deep vocals and mostly fingerpicked guitar. Disturbing yet beautiful.
Genre: Folk: Alternative Folk
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Broken
4:15 album only
2. Fairies and Fools
2:49 album only
3. Come Saturday
2:52 album only
4. In From the Cold
3:18 album only
5. Tremble
3:12 album only
6. She Won't Listen
4:22 album only
7. Railway Car
3:32 album only
8. Nothing Good
4:06 album only
9. And She Looked Down
3:36 album only
10. Dagger Dagger
3:51 album only
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Old Lost John is the musical project of Swedish songsmith Tomas Thunberg. Once a woodsman and a horse-keeper, he now lives in the city of Malmo, writing and recording his own music. A dedicated DIY artist, Tomas recently launched his own label, Tight Grain, and Faceless is his first proper album after a string of demos and limited CD-R releases.

Tomas' deep voice and quiet fingerpicking, embellished by occassional trombone, bowed saw and various other instruments in this purely acoustic setting, creates a nocturnal, haunting atmosphere perfectly complementing the ambigious and sometimes disturbing lyrics. "Over the years, I've learned to trust my intuition", says Tomas, "and when most enjoyable, writing is more than anything an act of discovery. In fact, so is recording, and most arrangements on this album weren't prepared before the sessions."

The title of the album, Faceless, seems to serve as a guiding line to how the listener should approach the songs. "The opening track, Broken, was the song that sort of showed the path to follow when putting the whole album together. I had plenty of songs to pick and choose from, but I wanted something that would hold up well as a whole, loosely following some kind of theme. And these songs, or most of them anyway, deal with lack of trust and communication, where the people involved, often the narrator, hide their true selves out of shame or fear of being rejected, sometimes deliberately and sometimes not. These characters are not always to be trusted, even when they believe so themselves."

One cannot help but wonder to what extent this is autobiographical? "Probably less than people are generally inclined to believe. I blend fact and fiction, dream and reality, imagined self and made up characters without thinking twice about it."
The cover art shows the artist hiding his face, perhaps thereby signalling that he is in fact not to be identified as the songs' real narrator. "Yes, there's a picture inside where my face is clearly visible, but I look the other way into the distance. Facing the camera would indicate honesty and openness, like a handshake, which would be more suitable for a decidedly autobiographical album."

The album was recorded "late at night" at Tomas' private home studio, and features inspired performances from a small cast of musicians. There are Göran Abelli's exquisite trombone fills, the eerie spells of Frida Åstrand's bowed saw, mandolin by Olof Jennfors and four various backup singers: Ida Gustafsson, Frida Ekerlund, Frida Åstrand and critically praised songwriter and fellow Swede Thomas Denver Jonsson. A vast array of various acoustic instruments, like guitars, mandolin, mandola, melodeon, pump organ, tremelo harmonica and tin whistle, are handled by Tomas Thunberg himself.



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