Well wait no longer, for the debut album is now here – and it doesn’t disappoint. ‘Portraits’ is a collection of subdued yet effervescent tracks that, make no mistake, are made for isolated listening.
The record as a whole draws outlines of endless adventure. It almost seems a shame to break it down into individual tracks, such is the power and near-spiritual vibrancy of the conjoined tracklist, but some particular highlights do ooze precision in their own right.
This isn’t an album made for shuffling through, nor for a house party or a rushed situation
The music is carefully temperamental. Backbeats and vocals leave you inclined to shut your eyes before the hooks comes in to send you dreaming, with hints of everything from modern vocal-pop to African rhythms notably present throughout.
Holly Walker stars on ‘Midas’, her vocals slowly surfing, seemingly improvising along a circling piano rhythm. It’s a song that perfectly sums up the escapist, measured element of the album, conjured up by the simplest of means, using minimalistic measures to create something unlike anything out there.
Some songs can drift by almost-invisibly if you listen to the album as a whole, which you could see as a drawback, or you could use to remark on the wholeness of the finished record, an artwork not to be pulled apart at the seams.
This isn’t an album made for shuffling through, nor for a house party or a rushed situation. This is an album to be appreciated rather than blasted, to relax to, and to summon up dreams of more magical times.