Born from love, musical empathy, a baby grand piano discovered on Gumtree and an expired visa, Snowbird duo Stephanie Dosen and Simon Raymonde have crafted an album of exquisite melody and mood that radiates the uncanny mystery of the object it's named after: moon.
Released on Bella Union, the label that Raymonde has run and curated since his former band Cocteau Twins went their individual ways in 1997, moon comprises 11 songs composed between two continents; Raymonde was in London while Dosen was in North Carolina after being based in the capital following her 2007 debut A Lily For The Spectre. Snowbird's album was subsequently crafted via the wonder of technology, and yet moon has one unifying and intimate sound and vision, from gently pulsating, pop-centric trails ("I Heard The Owl Call My Name", "Bears On My Trail") and lingering, luminous ballads ("All Wishes Are Ghosts", "Come To The Woods") to the musical equivalent of floating downstream, bathed
in silvery light ("Charming Birds From Trees", "In Lovely").
The eagle-eyed out there will notice the predominance of flora and fauna on moon, starting with the name Snowbird. There's more on "Where Foxes Hide", "We Carry White Mice" and "Heart Of The Woods". But there is one human subject in"Amelia", and others came out to play too, a suitably transatlantic roster of friends: Radiohead drummer Philip Selway and guitarist Ed O'Brien, Midlake guitarist Eric Pulido and drummer McKenzie Smith and two more gifted guitarists in Paul Gregory(Lanterns On The Lake) and Jonathan Wilson.
If the 11 tracks weren't enough there is a 2nd half of the record!. An album of remixes (one for each 11 tracks) by Michigan's electronic music genius by the name of RxGibbs, who expands, annotates and shines a whole new light on the wonder of Snowbird, adding and subtracting beats, creating otherworldly ambient passages, and building the other half of a distinctly beautiful and passionate whole that gives a whole new meaning to the term"moonstruck" The album cover (above) is by Vaughan Oliver, famed graphic designer known for his distinctive work for 4AD, including many album covers for Cocteau Twins.
1. I Heard The Owl Call My Name
2. All Wishes Are Ghosts
3. Charming Birds From Trees
4. Where Foxes Hide
6. Bears On My Trail
8. Come To The Woods
9. We Carry White Mice
10. In Lovely
11. Heart Of The Woods
Track by track remix by RX GIBBS