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Michaela Melián Los Angeles

  • Words: Chris Sabbath
  • Label: Monika Enterprise
  • XLR8R Rating: 8/10

On Los Angeles, the sophomore full-length from F.S.K. bassist Michaela Melián, the German soloist has finally settled into her surroundings, and the view into her ethereal sound-shifting universe is absolutely breathtaking. Two years after her exquisite 2005 debut, Baden–Baden, Melián is now entering territories uncharted, salting subtle compositions of orchestral beauty with ambient blur, lulling guitar drones, and pinches of electronics. “Locke-Pistole-Kreuz” opens the album with delayed piano, tinted with occasional filtered acoustic guitar and horn before cascading into “Angel”’s heavenly shimmer. Songs such as “Föhrenwald” and “Buchberg” sustain a similar, looping quietude throughout while Melián’s future-pop take on Roxy Music’s “Manifesto” casts a Nico-esque mirror image.

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