Ziemba – Hope is Never – Album Review by Rena Garrett
Release Date – June 24th 2016
Label – Lo & Behold Records
It’s exciting to come across someone new, that’s trying to push boundaries of a particular genre. Ziemba is the performance name of René Kladzyk. She is a Brooklyn based performer, musician and artist. Hope Is Never is her debut album.
‘El Paso’ is the standout track with a bass and synthesizer intro that reminds you of 1980’s Sci-fi films such as soundtracks by John Carpenter. The lyrics captivate you with lines like ‘I let you touch my naked heart’ refrained and ‘El Paso buried under red hot lava, blazing brimstone’. The bass notes keep the track grounded while the vocal delivery suggests hints of Blondie.
‘It Curls Itself’ is an experimental a capella track that blends choral sounds with wishful lyrics ‘It’s hard to tear away.. It’s hopelessly romantic, A glimmering …’ It’s reminiscent of the dreamy cosmic sounds of Stina Nordenstam. ‘Phantom See’ is a haunting track with lyrics to match, ‘bodies have no corners, map makers, no ships were swallowed… prying their nasty diet’. The drums create a tribal beat on the track and they are never overpowered by the other instruments. They mesh with Kladzyk’s vocals to create a dreamlike quality.
‘Set me as a Seal’ is a folksy ballad with violin strains that work to elevate it out of being just another pop song. These mix well with Kladzyk’s vocals and the synthesizer to add an edge to the track that otherwise could have been kitsch. ‘Tiger Woman’ is another upbeat track that uses the bass to good effect.
The album is split by lyrical interludes with tracks ‘With the Fire’, ‘Rapture’, Hope is Never’, ’Hope is a fold’ and ‘Where Without’ and while these are all pleasant to listen to, Ziemba’s sound is at its strongest in the more experimental tracks.
Although Kladzyk is no stranger to performing, this is a self-assured first venture for a solo album.
1) It Curls Itself
2) Phantom See
3) El Paso
4) Set Me As A Seal
5) With the Fire
7) Tiger Woman
8) Hope is Never
9) Hope is a Fold
10) Where Without