"To Sleep Apart" is the second single from Farao's eponymous debut EP, available now from Something Nothing Records. Norwegian produce Kristoffer Lislegaard's remix of "To Sleep Apart" has transformed the song's gentle grace into an altogether darker creature. The poignancy and heartbreak somehow amplified to even greater effect. A sad, solemn but nonetheless moving affair.
Having grown up in frosty Valdres, lived in Oslo, written and recorded in Reykjavik and relocated to London two years ago, maybe the sprawling musical diaspora of Kari Jahnsen's debut EP should come of no surprise. Combining wistful melodies, keyboards that quietly fizz in the backdrop of her finger-picked acoustic guitar murmurs and lo-fi bumps and whistles, all infused with a wondrous Nordic iciness, this
Recorded with Mike Lindsay from Brit experimenters Tunng, Jahnsen found making the record amid the wintry scapes of Reykjavik an inspiring process. "Iceland is one of my favourite countries. My fantasy is to find some Icelandic Viking with a huge beard and move there one day," she says. "I actually slept in the studio too, so the whole thing was really quite intense." Jahnsen played almost all of the instruments across the four tracks here, carefully fashioning a gossamer bed of folk-pop sounds to lay her vocal ruminations on love, life and mortality on. "Death is the scariest thing in the world," she explains "obviously it's a natural thing, but to me disappearing forever just doesn't make any sense."
In 2013 Jahnsen brought her unique sound to The Great Escape, Secret Garden Party and Reeperbahn festivals, as well as venues across Europe as tour support to the likes of Karl Hyde of Underworld fame, Moddi and Icelandic superstar-in-the-making Ásgeir. Making her schedule even busier are side-projects in shoegaze band Hella Better Dancer (in which Jahnsen plays drums), Anna Lena and the Orchids and new Erased Tapes signing Douglas Dare's backing band.
It's a wonder, then, that she's found any time to pen a debut album - but she's managed it all the same. That LP, to be recorded with Wild Beasts and Ghostpoet producer Richard Formby, is expected to be released in 2014.
In the meantime, this self-titled EP is a rich listen that teases at a bright, bright future for the newcomer. Be able to say you were there from the beginning.
Farao will headline the Waiting Rooms in London on 25th February. Her eponymous debut EP is out now on Something Nothing Records
25th - The Waiting Room, London **Headlining Show**
Listen to 'To Sleep Apart' (Kristoffer Lislegaard Remix) here:
The BBC drama starring Aidan Turner returns to BBC One on September 4th.