New Favorite: “If I” by Machine Birds
“If I” is a song to fall in love with. You can’t get enough of it.
“Save Yourself EP” by Machine Birds out soon in the USA and Canada!
There’s a beauty in drifting towards something and there’s a truth in the old saying that sometimes the journey is more important than the actual destination. The same could be said of the mystical, magical tour of the songs born from the minds of Machine Birds. Working their way to pop bliss through loops, synthesizers and the human voice, songs like “Save Yourself”, “If I”, “Time” and “One Last Try” gathers a rich, organic fullness as beautiful as it is weird. The songs are paradoxical as they conform to a pop-verse-chorus-structure, but meditate their way towards to achieve this.
The debut single “Time” was released in 2011 and it lulls the listener into a state of waltz. A glockenspiel arpeggiates the chords as vocalist Maria Skranes sets the scene. More and more synths join the small symphonic suite and when the beat kicks in a woozy synth line propels the track into space. Perhaps dreamland. The track, which also marks the first collaboration between the duo and producer Njaal, is a small, weird gem.
Based in Bergen, Norway, Maria Skranes and Marte Eberson are two friends who create wonderful, synthesizer-filled ambient-pop together. The song “One Last Try” was deservedly nominated to “Årets Urørt 2011” by NRK, a national prestigious award given to new pop acts. After finishing recording an EP in January (out in April 2012), the two girls find themselves currently working on their debut-album, but in the meantime they proven to be one of the most hypnotizing live-acts in their genre from Norway. This is in part due to Maria Skranes wonderful achievements as a vocalist and Ebersons complete control over they synthesizers she uses.
Hidden in their landscapes are echoes of the classic 4AD-sound, with This Mortal Coil and Cocteau Twins as references for those of you unfamiliar with the beautiful darkness and sorrow in both the landscapes Eberson evokes with her synthesizers and the dramatic, yet-still-restrained vocals of Skranes. Using loop-devices and effects, all done live, she creates her own lush palette of vocal textures to float along the melodies and riffs Eberson plays – live as well.