Agnes Obel, Philharmonics

Andrew Mueller

By Andrew Mueller

on 12.21.11 in Reviews


Agnes Obel

Obel’s debut was one of 2011′s least assuming and most gratifying surprises. The Danish singer-songwriter arrived, from sight unseen, as a fully formed artist, her breathy, just slightly accented vocal haunting a ghostly gorgeous collection of songs, picked out in a piano technique at once lulling and insistent. “Down By The River” evoked the sepulcral fragility of PJ Harvey circa White Chalk, a cover of John Cale’s “Close Watch” suggested rare poise as an interpreter, and the astutely judged instrumentals glued the album into a coherent whole that encouraged, and rewarded, many repeat listenings.