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Third album from inexplicable Austrian chart topper Soap&Skin. I say inexplicable not because the music is bad, far from it, but because this is clearly not 'pop' music. From Gas to Solid / you are my friend is an album of sparse gothic beauty, which explores Anja Plaschg's sense of self as she is she encounters parenthood and the album cycle. 


LP £23.99 PIASR1040LPX

180g black vinyl LP on PIAS. Comes in a gatefold sleeve with 12-page booklet + limited edition white vinyl 7”.

  • Shipping cost: £3.15 ?
  • Includes download code.
  • Only 1 copy left.
This item is in stock and can be dispatched immediately. Can ship immediately for Christmas.

LP £18.99 PIASR1040LP

180g black vinyl LP on PIAS. Comes in a gatefold sleeve with 12-page booklet.

  • Shipping cost: £3.15 ?
  • Includes download code.
  • Only 2 copies left.
This item is in stock and can be dispatched immediately. Can ship immediately for Christmas.

CD £4.99 PIASR1040CDX

CD on PIAS.

  • Shipping cost: £1.00 ?
This item needs to be ordered in from a supplier. Usually ships in 2-3 days but delays are possible. Will arrive after Christmas.

REVIEWS

From Gas to Solid / you are my friend by Soap&Skin
1 review. Write a review for us »
8/10 Clinton Staff review, 22 October 2018

The words "Austrian Chart Topper" just don't initially excite me as I imagine the horrors that would represent but this project of native singer Anja Plaschg (not an anagram) is perhaps a little like the music of Bjork in that it has given her huge success despite not being all that a commercial prospect. 

This is her first record in quite some time and right from the get go it sounds like something interesting. First up, Spotify listeners are going to be flicking forward in their regulation 30 seconds as not much at all happens during this time both on the opening stark piano ballad 'This Day' and the subsequent slightly more sound filled 'Athom'. On both tracks minimal notes are picked out underneath Plaschg's not at all unpleasant voice wanders in dislocated patterns. Her voice sits somewhere, I guess between Cat Power and Feist, a rich bodied thing - easy on the ear. It's smoothness tends to sand off any rough edges the music may cause. It's an interesting record in that it's not exactly unlistenably experimental, it just moves at a very slow pace and often (especially when writing real time reviews) the listener is waiting for the singer to catch up. 

It's certainly in the territory of the likes of Julia Holter though much less fully formed in terms of arrangements. It's mixture of chamber folk, neo-classical, goth and electronica is very appealing. It's dead serious stuff so not one for pop clarts but instead is a slowly unfurling immersive listen. Occasionally you worry she might get too navel gazing but she often hurls herself back from the abyss. A good example is on the multifaceted 'Surrounded' where an enormous Zola Jesus shriek threatens to overtake the haunting melodrama but where that artist (and also Florence and the Machine) would have howled relentlessly, she just hints at it before pulling back for more autumnal beauty.     


VIDEO

Soap&Skin - Heal (official lyric video) - YouTube



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