JAKOB OLAUSSON
Moonlight Farm
IND 055 LP/CD




If Skip Spence were somehow, instead of finding his white-frocked self stuck in the rat-infested hole that was Bellvue, transplanted to the pine forests north of Malmo, Sweden, in a sonic nest of gimbri, bells, shakers and clothed in Tibetan silk, one would come slightly closer to the reality of Jakob Olausson’s migratory whims. To be sure, that foggy and only slightly inland empire of synapse-twisters like Ben Chasny offers a step on the trodden trail, but this isn’t the same road we’ve traveled before. Olausson’s huge ears protect him from the cold and keep the sun from turning his face to a series of desert crags, as his compositions slowly fade down the walls of four-track bedroom artistry into atemporal suites that shrink huge expanses and are a bellows to the microcosmic. Enter the Moonlight Farm.

~ Clifford Allen
One Sheet Scribe

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On "Welcome Traveler", from Moonlight Farm :
This is a great song for cruising around in the woods. Jakob is the new thing, one of the only people making folk-inspired music right now that I not only can get into, but am totally jealous of. The first time I heard his record I was thinking, "Well, no reason for me to make music anymore. This kid hit it." I'm over it now, which is good, so I can just kick back and listen and be amazed. Thick and multi-tracked vocals layered on dissonant reverb-laced melodies. Damn.

~ Ben Chasny
San Francisco USA

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Jakob Olausson is best known, if at all, for his sub-radar activities with Sweden’s Joshua Jugband 5 (check yr Slippytown back catalogue for more of that brand of boo) but this, his first solo LP, is a whole other bucket of flesh. Moonlight Farm is one of the most beautifully nocturnal and disconcertingly intimate broadcasts to make it out of the heart of the wood since Joshua’s Gold Cosmos. The overall atmosphere has the same kind of early electric feel as MV’s Maximum Arousal recordings, while Olausson’s evocatively double-tracked vocals move from a weighted down Skip Spence/Ben Chasny hybrid to a pro-denim and leather Leonard Cohen (or does that make him Jim Morrison?). His songs cross endless tranced dirges with drones that are so lunar they illuminate the entire horizon and huge distorto-smears of backing vox that sound like tiny fists crushing the light from stars. Some of the instrumentals here are so evocatively conceived – beautifully reconciling handmade DIY traditions and higher-minded bliss – that they sound positively Japanese, with a track like “The Wind Combs Her Hair” almost passing for early Ché-SHIZU. But it’s the songs you’ll keep coming back too, elegiac teleports to the fringes of a whole other evocatively conceived universe, where every breath births reverberant shadows and the map of yr desires reads like a mirror of the constellations. From one loner to another, this is everything that the phrase ‘private press’ conjures up and more. A modern classic. Comes with full-colour stuck on cover in the patented De Stijl manner. Limited to 800 copies and already sold out at source. Highest recommendation.

~ David Keenan
Volcanic Tongue

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For example, there's Jakob Olausson, that guitar-slingin' sugar beet farmin' folk-singer from near the town of Landskrona (the press loves this stuff). If you've made it this far, you've probably at least heard about his Moonlight Farm LP, as released a year or two ago by the Destijl label, because it's really something. David Keenan may occasionally go a little over the top in his record reviews (my favorite was the time he compared a Wooden Wand album to no less than US Saucer, Loren Mazzacane Connors, The Rolling Stones, MV & EE, Comus, Sun Ra, International Harvester/Trad Gras Och Stenar, and Tom Rapp, all in a mere two sentences), but when he calls Olausson's LP "a modern classic," he's not exaggerating one bit. It's a beautiful and haunting psych folk record, simple as that, with songs that spread out like sweet dark honey and blend perfectly into the fabric of both day and night, shaped by deep drowsy lyrical intonations that wander into unforgettable hooks, like the first song's "If we all could say / what tomorrow brings...." or, in the second song, the weary dusted way he sings "Perhaps I should testify...." You might think "psych folk" is a lame media catch-phrase or something, but I personally use the term to describe albums of psychedelic folk, and this is simply one of the best such albums I've ever heard. It's honestly right up there on my shelf with Oar and Emerges and Furniture Music for Evening Shuttles and the first Six Organs of Admittance and whatever else. The vinyl seems to be more or less sold out but it's just been reissued on CD so jump on it......

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