A blend of the radical and the beautiful...

“Home is where most of the music starts. It's where everything is happening; with the people I live with – as well as bringing friends to record and write together. A lot of the album is quite ‘home’ focused; my own little bubble.”

The Danish R&B singer Marie Dahlstrøm’s new album 'Like Sand' is a cascading compilation that elegantly walks between soul, jazz and R&B. The 14 track album intertwines an immense scope of reflectivity and in listening there is space for us to look at the dimensional qualities of fear and love.

The title track 'Like Sand', featuring British guitarist Beau Diak, soothes in a soliloquy on the grasp of love. Her voice is untethered, floating above in an atmosphere that breathes spaciousness into the listener’s ears; she sings “No I can’t love you like this...like sand.”

Her imagery joined with the soulful jazzy interlude of guitar and beats encompass and exhale to a point of flux, of dynamic shifting, of lucid mirroring to the parallels of how we are in love: wavering in anticipation. The music crashes over us; her voice, an ocean of her own. We are given refuge, a place to realign and reframe in the tide of changing melodies and tonalities.

The soulful execution of this album reminds us of the delicate grace in the particular framework of how to hold and feel love, to let it be, let it come, let it free... to sustain a space unabridged. 'Home With You' opens with a delicate ease that diffuses into a vulnerable reflection on personal flaws. Dahlstrøm’s vocals transcend and perfectly melt into the soundscape of melodic beats and harmonies that really emphasize her strength in conveying a particular emotionality.

We are brought a body of work that operates in an experimental and electronically charged mode that overtakes our attention to the honest space she is singing from. In the last nine years since releasing her EP Feelings in 2011, we can vividly feel the amount of intentionality and care put towards this album.

There is a maturing in her sound through new chord progressions and an attuned vocal range that really pulls us into her world and makes us feel like she is singing only to us. Although the album keeps a cohesive R&B tonality, there is a dynamic edge between the tracks that invite us through the intersections of varied tempos and feelings that really add up to a complete representation of Dahlstrøm’s honest reflectivity of the ways we come together.

The music on 'Like Sand' elevates and amasses to a point of the radical and the beautiful, where we find ourselves dancing, crying, loving and listening all at once.

8/10

Words: Rae Niwa

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