Poland-born, Glasgow-based musician Ela Orleans gets a retrospective release on Night School (Julia Holter, The Space Lady). Orleans has always used the phrase ‘movies for ears’ as something between a motto and a tagline, so when it came to naming this album there really was only ever one title in the running. The artist’s lo-fi take on everything from 60’s girl-group to Lynchian dream-pop is an idiosyncratic joy. File Movies For Ears next to Richard Youngs and fellow Night School graduate Molly Nilsson.
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To the uninitiated, you should really check out Ela Orleans. There are several long pieces on this site (usually penned by Brian) which tell of her excellence but in line with Night School's attempt at collecting her best work into one easi-browse album, I'm going to be short and succinct in an attempt to cut to the chase.
If you like the likes of Broadcast, Silver Apples and the Space Lady you will find much to enjoy here. She creates unique, slightly scary soundscapes over which she intones in a deep voice that sits right between Trish Keenan and Nico. Each piece is a repetitive burble of vintage electronics - there's a filmic Lynchian quality to her sounds but it is very very listenable and almost pop in it's accessibility. Tracks like In the Night sound like slightly warped takes on the dark and foreboding 60s psych pop of the likes of Jefferson Airplane.
Movies For ears does a good job in introducing the listener to her somewhat foreboding back catalogue. Carefully selecting a series of songs that showcases the artist at her least wilful and most focussed. You have been told now in no uncertain terms to get on board.
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