Efterklang – ‘Windflowers’ album review

‘Windflowers’, Efterklang’s sixth album and first on City Slang, finds the Danish trio in optimistic mood – channelling the season of spring and the sea of tiny flowers that brings more colour to Danish forests every year. This hopeful tone has resonated with the band and inspired them to embrace their melodic and pure pop sensibilities.

‘Alien Arms’ opens the record with talk of looking forward to a more positive future (‘everything else is just a phase’) and a plea to let love win: ‘Let me into your heart, let me open your eyes, only time can stand a change, bring it out of an empty space’. This is set against a genteel Sufjan-style soundtrack, while strings come to the fore on ‘Beautiful Eclipse’, just one of many songs that is inspired by the majesty of nature. ‘Hold Me Close When You Can’ takes the album in a more personal direction with pleas to a loved one to help when you feel you can’t go on, all delivered over a bed of twinkly piano and experimental electronica.

‘Living Other Lives (24bit Digital)’ has stop-start synths and a woozy, dreamy feel as the band talk about ‘a real-life simulation’ over upbeat tones and repeat the line ‘I keep dreaming living other lives’ while ‘Mindless Center’ opens in darker, almost Arab Strap-esque fashion as they urge the subject to make up their mind of where they want to go next as the sound veers into grandiose chamber pop. ‘House on a Feather’ is slower and more atmospheric with synthesised vocals once more talking about falling in from outer space while the closing ‘Abent Sar’ is an 8-minute masterpiece featuring a guest appearance from The Field’. A slow-burning sensation, it veers into experimental psychedelia three minutes in before a burst of electronics and drum beats takes over and changes the course of the song (and record).

‘Windflowers’ is a record inspired by the pure joy of making and playing music that finds Efterklang blooming.

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