FABELS – ALBUM REVIEW

FAbLE MEaniNgS; – A short moral story.

– The plot of a play, epic or dramatic poem.

– To relate or tell.

MuSo’S; Ben Aylward (Guitar, Vocals). Hiske Weijers (Bass, Keys and Vocals)

WRIte Up.

A few years back I stumbled into a Fabels gig at the Gasoline Pony and I was hooked line and sinker.

The Gasoline Pony (Marrickville) has a large consumption of blues, country and folk and I’ve cheered on numerous high quality acts in the homely atmosphere with a local brewed beverage in hand. I knew something was left of centre though when the two Fabels lugged half a ton of old school amps and instruments onto the stage and a swathe of foot pedals that reminded me of the game; Sudoku.

With her weathered keyboard and grindy bass, Hiske holds the grounding force of the fabled Fabels, playing intense low end rhythmic chant like arrangements laced with her ghostly high range singing style. She crosses in and out of multiple European languages with driving incantations of possibility and change. She wraps it all up with a dirty old Low-fi drum machine, something like a Casio from the 90’s setting the scene for Ben to shoot towards the stars…

With his humble axe, soothing vocals and door opening foot pedals, Ben weaves like a Tantric spider. “A guitarist isn’t fit to play unless he has a least 3 delay pedals” he says jokingly and after watching him play I agree to some degree. The blend of melodic inversions, soaked in a barrage of effects lets Ben dance on his own weblike mandala. From singular notes to a choir like layering of harmonic cacophonies, the guitar induced tones sway back and forth like the moon controlling the tide.

With innocent and effortless unison the duo raise the frequency spectrum, sweeping the audience, body, mind and soul, into a trance of profound abstraction. From periods of soothing lullaby that heal the inner child’s nuero brain paths to intense down beat Euro trash counter-attacks, the expansiveness of the band enacts just how scary and at times fragile the human conscious can be.

tHE ALbuM; HI

TRACK 1 – The album kicks off with ‘Silent Language’. It’s the gatekeeper for what’s to come. With haunting and mysterious orchestral dynamics it hooks the listener in with its emphatic question. At the same time it gives the listener an opportunity to clear the mind’s canvas for a passage into the unknown.

TRACK 2 – Next, the driving simplicity of ‘Against It’. Fabels tighten the reins a little bit in this one, focusing on a raw punk lower section laced with confident vocal phrases that portray strength and focus.

TRACK 3 – ‘AH’ emits industrial chill against a comforting European folk vocal. The vocal humility supports the listener through crashes of raw power and sustained crunch instrumental sections that drone and chant like the scions in a blue black lake

TRACK 4 – Ben’s church-toned web of strings overlapping with Hiske’s staunch marching band synth-midi drives ‘Liege Montreal’. For me – I get the feeling someone’s outstretched hand is diving down into the blue black waters offering help and support

TRACK 5 – I still feel the helping hand coming through in ‘HI’ but this time it’s diving through the grey mists of our industrial era and questioning our conditioning.

INTErLUDE; By track 5 the album incites the listener to release the compression of time restrictions as they become fully immersed in the natural flow of cellular rhythms. (As I wrote this part I noticed that I was half an hour late to work. Oopsy)

TRACK 6 –  ‘Evacuation’ snaps us quickly back into reality. The initial impression is the feeling of being in the chair of a first year apprentice dentist. Grindy and industrial with a; Dooon’t mess with me attitude.

TRACK 7 – Back to the watery, angelic ‘Jacinta’ a juxtaposition of release and tension that Fabels do so well. Calming and kind vocals with almost bell like instrumental harmonies saturated with a cement truck full of reverb. Sort of like Nanna’s knitted sweater.

TRACK 8 – ‘Alone’ the complement and outro to the album. It’s like humanity against the noise. I personally do feel alone in this track but in a content way. It’s a nice soft round up of the album. I like how the vocals get a chance to stand more ‘alone’. It puts a bit more of a face to the muso’s and compliments their diversity.

COdA; With a gut full of delay and a shit load of trash, from my perspective the duo emits; Peace, love, challenge and change

  • Peace, in one’s self.
  • Love, for the present and potential.
  • Challenge, not to be eaten up by Megaliths.
  • and Change. Well you as the listener can figure that one out.
  • Well done gang. The album compliments your live performance.

Recorded, Mixed, mastered and Produced By Geir Brillion @ studio Om Syd.

Write up by Peter Fenwick

 

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