Review of Open Field Album by Taken By Trees

Taken By Trees
Open Field
Album Review

Taken By Trees Open Field Album

Having told the rest of The Concretes that this was not what she wanted to do -too shy to enjoy live shows, frustrated by compromise and sick of the music business, Victoria Bergsman very quickly recouped, and assembled 'Taken By Trees', a solo-project to heal and start again.

'Open Field's down tempo sounds, smudged together like watercolour into an indistinguishable dreamy haze is a reflection of her will to get back to pure basics, and this is backed by the strong natural imagery that permeates all channels of this album: 'Tell me when the snow has gone its way, Tell me when it's time for me to play, cause I don't wanna be standing alone without a hand to hold' is the outstandingly inviting opening line of the album that suddenly transforms this isolated and low-key work into a great expanse.

The evidence of anything resembling pace is hard to come by, but on 'Lost and Found', Victoria combines with Bjorn (Peter, Bjorn and John) to write something more upbeat. Her heart clearly isn't in it though, at least not as much as her solo work; even 'Only Yesterday' that nurses itself in weakness and 'Cedar Trees' that has about as much direction as an unwanted beachball see Victoria self-assured in the quality of her writing. And it is quality - real quality. While they do only drive to display simplicity, much of the instrumental arrangements on the album are quite complex, for example title-track 'Open Field'. It rouses like a humanitarian crisis, an epic victory or a large cake in a shop window. And who doesn't enjoy being roused by a good window cake? You'll probably just go in a buy it - which I strongly recommend.

James Curtis.

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