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Tobias Lilja Time is on My Side

  • Words: Dave Segal
  • Label: n5MD
  • XLR8R Rating: 8/10

Tobias Lilja's sophomore album brings to mind the term "ambient emo." There have been few proponents of the subgenre because it isn't easy to execute without sounding ridiculous. In fact, it takes great poise: David Sylvian, Martyn Bates, and Mark Hollis all predate Time Is on My Side's chilling torch songs. Lilja's voice may not be as pliable and emotive as those esteemed singers, but he does convey undeniable sincerity and acute pain through his woeful lyrics. Lilja conjures tundras of synth flourishes laced with skeins of guitar and violin, and their amorphous ache will chill you to tears.

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