Review of Taken By Trees album East of Eden released through Rough Trade.
You might recognise Victoria Bergsman's distinctive voice from Peter Bjorn And John's Young Folks. East Of Eden is her second solo album under the guise of Taken By Trees. Apparently recorded in Pakistan with local musicians contributing to the album, the whole record has a real, well, eastern feel. With chanting, rhythmic drums and eerie flutes cleverly weaved into it, Victoria Bergsman's other-worldly, breathy vocals suit this sound perfectly.
The album kicks off with the haunting flute of To Lose Someone before Bergsman's melancholy vocals start. The rhythmic percussion and flute continue to dominate the song and the backing vocals are Pakistani; it gives you a good idea as to how the album will continue. Greyest Love Of All is a definite stand out track; a beautiful melancholy number about thinking the grass is always greener, with a rhythmic melody that is strangely catchy. There are a couple of songs on the album that are a tad indulgent; Wapas Karna for example is purely sung by Pakistani musicians and whilst it should fit the feel of the album, it might just be a step too far for some listeners. But the interesting tempo and melody of My Boys and the return of Bergsman's vocals bring it back on track.
Although the unusual eastern sound of this album may not be to everyone's taste, Bergsman's hypnotising vocals and the unique instrumentation make East Of Eden is an enchanting album in every sense.