Majdanek Waltz - _Hamlet's Childhood_
(The Eastern Front, 2007)
by: Quentin Kalis (
Majdanek Waltz performs ethereal neofolk, akin to similar artists such as Poets to Their Beloved and Medusa's Spell. Unfortunately, they sing in their native Russian, which is a pity as the lyrics are impenetrable to Anglophiles such as yours truly, a definite liability when a band presumably has something to say. The music is soft, feeling as substantial as the filaments of a spider's web, weaving together strands from voice (near spoken male and female) and an assortment of folk instruments to create an enchanting album. They are assisted by a variety of guests, including ritual folksters Wolfsblood. One can hardly hold it against them for singing in their native language, but it does affect my enjoyment. A more significant issue is that Majdanek Waltz is as ephemeral as they are ethereal, and no single song manages to catch my attention, unlike say, Íon, where each understated note is memorable. This is not to say that this is an unpleasant listen -- quite the contrary; it just lacks that special something that allows it to be something more than just another autumn leaf in the stream of ethereal folk.
(article published 22/8/2008)
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