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Norwegian singer/songwriter RHYS MARSH, fresh off his guest appearance with the OPIUM CARTEL, follows up his lovely debut The Fragile State of Inbetween with Dulcima, a LP that is both more muscular and prettier than his first. While his prior record was a mostly acoustic experience, Dulcima plugs in, augmenting his dreamy art/folk/pop arrangements with electric guitar washes and sweeping progressive rock soundscapes. The pastoral atmosphere of the first record is still present, but mixed with a darker, more urban landscape – it’s as if the going-to-the-country direction of Inbetween has been reversed. The results on powerful tracks like “In Dark, In Light,” “The Frightened Souls” and “The Safety of All You Know” is nothing short of spectacular, with a full compliment of imaginative musicians (including ÄNGLAGÅRD and Opium Cartel drummer MATTIAS OLSSON and co-vocalist TRUDE EIDTANG) filling out Marsh’s strong melodies. Echoes of PORCUPINE TREE, KING CRIMSON, NICK DRAKE and NO-MAN ripple through the tracks, but ultimately Marsh sounds most like himself. Dulcima is an excellent record from an artist moving easily from strength to strength.
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