Today Sweden’s I Break Horses shares a new music video for “You Burn” (directed by David Dean Burkhart) in anticipation for its second album, Chiaroscuro, which is due next week via Bella Union / PIAS. Expect a North American tour in late Spring.
I BREAK HORSES is the musical project led by Maria Lindén. From her Stockholm base, the Swedish artist debut album in the shape of Hearts, was released by Bella Union in August 2011. Forward two years, and the arrival of the follow-up, entitled Chiaroscuro, is upon us. In the words of Lindén: “My only aim when starting to write this album was to ignore any possible second album expectations.” The result is a more confident and evolved sound with a more dramatic expression.
With Chiaroscuro, I Break Horses have created a sonic terrain is compellingly explored by Lindén, where electronic beats and synth-pop soundscapes replace the more shoegaze based-sound of their debut. As a result, there is a marked immediacy and directness to the new songs. As Lindén states: “I found myself writing almost all the sketches on the piano this time.” The music was recorded, mixed and produced by Lindén, with first lp wordsmith Fredrik Balck providing lyrical ideas from the images he derived from the music. Finally, Lindén and Balck would finish the lyrics together.
The title of Chiaroscuro – meaning “light-dark” – serves as the perfect embodiment of Lindén’s sonic creations, where an atmosphere and mood is created that evokes innermost feelings and thoughts residing beyond the surface reality of the material world. Ballads such as ‘Heart To Know’ and ‘You Burn’ are wrapped in fragile beauty. ‘Denial’ and ‘Medicine Brush’ are sublime synth-pop odysseys whose pulses guide you to new horizons. ‘Faith’ is a dance anthem complete with hypnotic beats, swirling synths and the mesmerising looped vocals of Lindén. “I let myself write both the happiest songs but also the saddest, and then I put them together”, states Lindén. This arrangement of light and dark forms the essence of Chiaroscuro.
Thursday 23 January – LONDON – Village Undergrond
I Break Horses
(Bella Union / PIAS)
Street Date: Jan. 21, 2014
1. You Burn
6. Medicine Brush
8. Weigh True Words
9. Heart To Know