Boa Morte – Before There Was Air – Album Review
by Killian Laher
You don’t truly know the meaning of the word hushed till you hear this third album from Boa Morte, arriving a mere nine years after their last album. A collection of ten songs that sound pretty much like nothing at first, repeated listens reveal the many layers within each one of these songs. Opening with Cormac Gahan’s unadorned breathy vocals, the sparse piano, picked guitar and cello will instantly pull you in. Each instrument adds to the song without dominating, before the first of several towering guitar solos 90 seconds in, eventually transforming into a group singalong. All of this just in the first song!
Most of the tracks are pretty much a musical ode to blissful idleness, the guitars of Ships Passing are evocative of mellow, lazy days, a little like early David Kitt. There are long extended codas on many of these songs consisting of gorgeous interlocking guitar passages. The aforementioned Ships Passing and The Garden are incredibly lush. Instruments are added gradually, despite the presence of strings on many tracks the album never sounds cluttered.
Gorgeous moments abound here, from the fingerpicking heaven of Stones / Stone By Stone to the almost liquid electric guitar on brief instrumental Cans. Everything is unhurried, the songs amble along with the minimum of fuss. Catchy tunes with strong choruses this is not, but it is an album of glorious songs for doing nothing to.
Track List –
1. A Sound
2. Sleep / Before The Landslide
3. Ships Passing
4. The Garden
5. No Piano
6. Stones / Stone By Stone
7. Deep Is Deeper
8. Sea Creatures