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Here's an LP of sleepy, richly arranged folkiness from 30km Inland which was constructed over the space of six years, so truly a labour of love. As I gather from the press release, the driving force around this loosely drifting ensemble is guitarist and arranger Xavier Marti, who has managed to assemble an impressive cast of musicians including a sizeable string section, so some of the pieces on here really do sound lush.
There are a mixture of instrumentals and vocal tracks here, but they sit nicely together and the album flows along very gracefully. It's classy, understated and delicately layered, a consistently relaxing listen, although the lack of rough edges might not be to everyone's taste. The song I'm enjoying the most is where they seem to head out of their comfort zone a little on 'Wharf 77' with a rinky-dink drum machine and some awkward little guitar loops and weird echoey vocals. It's quite cheeky and upbeat compared to the sombre mood of the rest of the album, a welcome little mood-lightener. It plods in places but it's all very pretty.
9/10 peter wix Customer review, 16th June 2014
Whilst this Anglo-Spanish enterprise has snuck out a clutch of compilation tracks over the last few years, this is the first full-length outing for the hard-to-file-alphabetically 30km Inland. Cut by the combined skills of lead arranger/multi-instrumentalist Xavier Martí (Mudo, Continental Film Night), multi-instrumentalist/mixer David Sheppard (Ellis Island Sound, Snow Palms, Continental Film Night et al.), vocalist Inés Naranjo (Winter Cabin), vocalist/lyricist Peter Wix (Continental Film Night) and multi-instrumentalist Juanan Ramos (Mudo), Stolen Shore Lines is the beatific end product of globe-trotting recording sessions spread-out over six years.
Richly eclectic – without distending into dilettantism – the five songs and five instrumentals that make up Stolen Shore Lines are ripe to accompany both soothing sunny Sunday mornings and filmic European panoramas. From the opening twinkle of the plaintive yet pretty acoustic guitar, piano, woodwind and string framed “Dies Empirics” – which cross-arranges the Penguin Café Orchestra with Nick Drake – it’s clear that 30km Inland’s debut has been built with incredible and loving attention to detail. Yet crucially, despite or perhaps because of the wealth of talent involved, the record never feels cluttered or over-crowded.
This means that there is plenty of space for divergent ideas to bob up and down without any jarring juxtapositions. Hence, on the ensuing Naranjo-led delights of “The Deckchair Man” things are peeled-back to an intimate folk ballad with a spacey mid-section; for the wordless “Twilight Picnic” wistful melodica is underpinned by serene Robert Kirby-like strings; within the brisk electro-acoustic Wix-sung “Wharf 77” nods are affectionately made to Yo La Tengo’s bossa nova art-pop diversions; over the lilting ululations and warming instrumental layers of “El Espléndido y Último Adiós” Read full review:http://www.adequacy.net/2014/06/30km-inland-stolen-shore-lines/
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