Monday, 19 January 2015
Elen – one of the strongest debut albums of the year
The Berlin musician, Elen, releases her debut album of the same name on 6th of February 2015. “Elen” will sometimes sound like British (dance) pop and at other times like the relaxed US folk music from the good old days – real homemade music and full of soul.
Elen isn’t the only song writer on the album; contributors also include the Indie star Kat Frankie among others. Fred Sauer, who played with Peter Fox and Nina Hagen, plays the keyboard. University of Popular Arts Professor, Robert Lingnau, plays the bass and Dirk Erchinger, one of the founders of the most excellent Jazzkantine, plays the drums.
Elen’s debut album “Elen” is probably one of the most personal and therefore strongest albums of the year. What would otherwise be a hopelessly simplified platitude or over-generalisation is a very fitting description in her case. For if there is one thing that you can (and should) say about Elen, it is that she is the album and the album is her.
The 25 year-old Berliner has always been very deeply involved with music and people, especially on the street where she is absolutely in her element. “Elen” is the natural result of her roots as a street musician and the immediacy of the street strikes you at once like a poem or a film: Elen’s voice starts off soft and gentle before reverting to the majestic and powerful but is at the same time always full of a sensitive velvety warmth. The sounds will remind you just as much of the grand dame of singer-song writing Tracey Chapman herself as they will of folk and pop singer Florence Welch of Florence & the Machine. Elen and “Elen” are brimming with feelings and this excess of emotion is reinforced even further by the fact that it is not only her who has done the song writing but also Indie star Kat Frankie and a few others. The keyboard is played by Fred Sauer, who also played with Peter Fox and Nina Hagen. University of Popular Arts Professor, Robert Lingnau, plays the bass and Dirk Erchinger, one of the founders of the most excellent “Jazzkantine”, plays the drums. While it will sometimes sound like British (dance) pop, at other times it will sound like the relaxed US folk music from the good old days – real homemade music and full of soul.
Elen has financed the album though crowd funding as she was unwilling to make herself dependent on anything other than the music. Her humility towards music comes out very strongly in her songs. One thing is certain: “Deep inside I know it’s gonna be alright” from the song “It’s Gonna Be All Right” – you can’t help but agree with that sentiment. Elen’s time has come and there will be many more people who listen to her music in the future than have heard her on the street up to now. She lives and breathes music, every line and every chord and it is her true self that is revealed in this album.