|Ormonde ♥ Machine (2012)|
Ormonde ♥ Machine
Born: November 17, 1975
Origin: Denton, TX, United States
Genres: Indie rock, folk
Occupations: Singer–songwriter, multi–instrumentalist
Instruments: Vocals, guitar, bass, accordion, keyboards, drums
Location: Dallas, Forth Worth, Texas / Seattle, Washington
Album release: 2012
Record Label: Hometapes
01. I Can't Imagine 4:29
02. Cherry Blossom 4:16
03. Lemon Incest 3:23
04. Machine 4:17
05. Secret 4:20
06. Blank Slate 4:37
07. Sudden Bright 5:00
08. Hold the Water 4:25
09. Drink 4:09
10. I'll Let You Know 4:56
Website: http://therobertgomez.com/ / MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/ormondemusic / http://www.myspace.com/robertgomezmusic/music
♥ Robert Gomez is a musician from Denton, Texas. After his first self–released album in 2005, Etherville, he was then signed to the British Label Bella Union and released the album Brand New Towns in 2007. Brand New Towns was relatively well received in the British press, such as The Guardian, The Sunday Times, and The Independent. Andy Gill of The Independent gave the album 5 out of 5 stars calling it "the first truly great album of the year". NPR music featured Gomez in an in–studio performance on "World Cafe" with David Dye in 2007. In a Nylon Magazine article in which they "polled experts across the U.S. to unearth the best unexpected local music scenes", Gomez was listed along with Midlake, St.Vincent, and the Baptist Generals as being noteworthy. Gomez' third record, "Pine Sticks and Phosphorus", was released in 2009 on the Denton–based label Nova Posta Vinyl. Currently, he is recording an album entitled Severance Songs based on the book Severance by Pulitzer Prize winner author Robert Olen Butler. In addition to performing as a solo artist, Gomez also performs with artists such as Sarah Jaffe, John Grant, and Anna Lynne Williams. © Melanie Gomez photographer
© Dina Douglass photographer
Birth name: Anna–Lynne Williams
Also known as: Lotte Kestner
Born: February 8, 1978
Origin: Laguna Hills, California, U.S.
Genres: Indie rock, folk rock, dream pop, shoegaze
Occupations: singer, songwriter
Instruments: Vocals, Guitar
♦ Anna–Lynne Williams (born February 8, 1978) is an American musician best known as the lead singer, songwriter, and guitarist of Trespassers William, an indie rock band based out of Seattle, Washington.
♦ Williams grew up in Laguna Hills, California, and now lives in Seattle. She is featured on The Chemical Brothers's song "Hold Tight London" from their 2005 album, Push the Button. In 2007, she started recording solo music under the name Lotte Kestner and released a collection of these songs on the album China Mountain which was released in 2008. She is featured on Au Revoir Borealis's song "The World is Too Much With Us" from their 2008 album, Dark Enough for Stars. Williams is also featured on several tracks of Anomie Belle's 2008 debut, Sleeping Patterns, and toured with Anomie Belle in support of the release.
♦ She has also collaborated with Motopony, Minotaur Shock, Phononoir, AFI, Fieldhead, Black Swan Lane, Robert Deeble and is currently working on an album with Robert Gomez.
♦ In 2011, Lotte Kestner released Stolen, an album of cover songs. Among them were the Trashcan Sinatras' "Earlies", Vic Chesnutt's "Flirted With You All My Life," and New Order's "True Faith".
MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/annalynnew © Eleanor Irving photographer
© Jeremy Buller, Seattle
♦ The kind of vocal dynamic created by Robert Gomez and Anna-Lynne Williams under the Ormonde banner is certainly not without precedent. From Serge Gainsbourg/Jane Birkin and Lee Hazlewood/ Nancy Sinatra in the ’60s to more contemporary duos like Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan or Dean & Britta, the craggy–voiced–guy/honey–toned–gal combination is a well–proven pop tool. But it’s not the kind of thing that just works automatically — you still need just the right pairing of voices and a carefully balanced approach to your material. Texan troubadour Gomez and Seattle songbird Williams put a check next to both of those requirements on Machine, the solo artists’ first outing as a duo.
♦ To create the music, Gomez and Williams holed up in an adobe house in the homey West Texas desert town of Marfa, writing together in an organic, intimate way. There’s something warmly insular about the feel of the album that seems to evoke that process, and simultaneously something sensual and dreamlike. Despite the landlocked area in which these slow–rolling tunes were conceived, Gomez and Williams achieve a strangely aqueous vibe, as languid keyboard lines and gently picked guitar backdrop their soft–sell vocal delivery. It’s the kind of summery hypno–pop one could easily get lost in, and Machine should probably bear one of those warning labels you see on pill bottles, urging against use while operating heavy machinery.
♦ The American duo Ormonde (whose name is taken from the Russian novelist Nabokov’s Lolita) were relative strangers when they decided to record an album in Marfa. Their solo careers were solid, Robert Gomez had toured with the likes of Midlake and recorded on his lonesome. Anna–Lynne Williams meanwhile is one half of the Trespassers William and even lent her vocal talents to the Chemical Brothers track Hold Tight London. But you can forget all that — this is their finest hour (or 43 minutes to be precise).
♦ Machine is an intimate record where the acoustic guitars are pushed up against the inner speaker, close and clear. Their cyclical nature is run by the steady beats, the vocals are quiet in delivery, it’s like every word has been considered for inclusion, it feels painfully real.
♦ Williams has a delicate tone, Gomez meanwhile whispers and breathes into the mic like Mark Linkous’ Sparklehorse. The gorgeous opener, Can’t Imagine, will slow you down, fade out the noise of everyday life and walk you into the duo’s serene and contemplative mood.
♦ During the writing process the two musicians were too shy to discuss their lyrics openly, instead passing slips of paper to one another. Yet this sounds like a beautiful waltz performed by lifelong dancing partners, both know where the other’s feet will fall and the direction they are destined to follow.
♦ Hear their warmed harmonies above the slightly distressed backbeat (Trip Hop almost) on A Blank Slate , or the Folk–infused title track where William’s swoons amongst the electric guitar riffs and streaming Hammond organ.
Ormonde will breathe down your neck, whisper in your ear and hold you closer than most — which is precisely why it’s one of the debuts of the year. — Marnie Reed
Written by Ron Trembath; 31 July 2012
♦♥ Anna–Lynne Williams and Robert Gomez, the illustrious duo that is Ormonde, have been invading my private spectrum for quite a while now. Several years ago, and old high school chum (more of a friend of a friend type) took up drumming duties for a little band I had sort of heard of before known as Trespassers William. He was essentially dropped from the group before I even knew it. Shortly after, or maybe in between, I was watching one of my favorite films of all time, A Love Song For Bobby Long, and I happened to recognize a precious voice (Anna–Lynne of Trespassers William) that still haunts me with joy when I hear it while Scarlett Johansson does her reading at a bus depot. The story continues.
♦♥ I then received two albums in the mail from two different (both superb) publicists and was instantly in love. One would be the last Trespassers William EP entitled Natural Order Of Things and the other would be Robert Gomez’s Pine Sticks & Phosphorus. Both albums blew me the hell away. I would love to lie and say that I always thought they would make a great duo. But, the truth would be that I never saw it coming. Although I still believe that Anna–Lynne’s vocals should be on every record that will ever be made until the end of her time, that is beside the point.
♦♥ Eventually Anna–Lynne would become an even greater staple in my own personal ventures, and a wonderful person to turn to for help in anyway. Such a great person. And while her latest solo album as Lotte Kestner has been in regular rotation since it’s release, so has Gomez’s wonderfully and deserving of praise album. And it has been out for quite sometime.
♦♥ Both of these geniuses of the disenchanted world of music and livelihood can best be characterized as creating timeless music that is irresistible and downright breathtaking. They did this apart. Now we have them together! The awesomeness of this set up is so extreme I cannot figure out how my iTunes, electricity, and life have not imploded leaving me senseless and awestruck. I say this as a warning, folks. Ormonde is here, and you may not be able to handle the excellence as it is breathed into you one beautiful note at a time.
♦♥ Ormonde’s debut album, Machine, is so unfathomably beautiful that simple words and praises will never do it justice. You just have to hear it. Fans of Anna–Lynne Williams are definitely not going to be let down. Fans of Robert Gomez are going to find some of his same wonderful composure, added with a wonderful batch of sugar and/or spice as Anna–Lynne sprinkles bits of sunshine and torture of Gomez’s fine crafted guitar work. Gomez himself seems to be at his strongest with the support of a good friend, as well. Which is encouraging and entrancing in itself. And while most fans may have grown accustomed to Anna’s normal stripped down beautiful work, some may grow weary of hearing her without Robert guiding her like the blinding Shepard he is. It is suffice to say that we should be extremely ecstatic that these two geniuses in their own right have found each other.
♦♥ So set your sights towards the sun, and let the wind of creative mastering take you through a journey you will not soon forget as you press play to hear Ormonde’s brilliant debut album, Machine. It really doesn’t matter what track you start with (although it appears as though I prefer “Sudden Bright” according to my track records, but who knows) you are going to end up listening to this album straight through.
♦♥ Every brilliant nuance and commonplace descriptive measure of this album is going to blow your mind. For two artists who seem to have built careers based on the idea that simplicity can be bliss, Anna–Lynne and Robert Gomez have created something so psychologically mind bending and innovative that it is going to absolutely mesmerize you to no end.
♦♥ It is safe, in my eyes, to say that Ormonde’s debut album is one of the best albums to be released in the last decade, and definitely one of the finest of 2012. This is not an overstatement folks. Machine is just that damned good. But don’t trust my judgement, you must hear it yourself. So do that. Now!
♦♥ Fortaken: http://www.fensepost.com
|Ormonde ♥ Machine (2012)|