Daniel Westerlund is a busy man. In 2014 he released All The Suns Of The Earth under the moniker E-Gone and followed it up this year with Advice To Hill Walkers. This is on top of his former life as The Goner and a selection of releases of post-rock / folk slabs of moody world-building.
Now, he’s back, with another alias, as Fyrskeppet with the album Sydostbrotten. Whereas his last releases as E-GONE highlighted leaning towards psych and world music, this record sees him heading back to post-rock waters.
As a fan of his work and slavishly enamoured with the gorgeous, doleful, harmonia drones that have so often accompanied Daniel on his travels, I must admit to feeling a trifle let down on first listen. The album is a great deal more ambient than I was expecting, with the drones wispy as opposed to biting. But the mistake was mine and subsequent listens have revealed that broad brush strokes have been replaced by the faintest hints of colours and shades.
‘27,000 hefnerljus’ throws us straight into the doldrums, listlessly cast adrift in a dusky realm of slowly rolling mists.
‘Ostra Kvarken’ is a ticking, throbbing conundrum puzzle in a swamp.
‘Linslykta av sjatte ordningen’; dripping dank caves with dew laden gossamer.
‘Mistsirener, hosten 1894’ takes us even deeper, ghostly reverberations that ring long into the night. Practically found-sound recordings of hauntings, the music here is so light as to almost float away. Towards the end of the song the wind picks up and a strange, lolling noise enters vision.
‘Almagrundet, 20 dec 1921’ reveals delicate fragments of melody, with a strumming zither. Occasionally showing reminisces of Echo & The Bunnymen’s Heaven Up Here or Puressence’s ‘Cape of No Hope’, there is a bold, song threatening to escape, but somehow failing, somehow falling…
Imagine a spectre appearing on the distant horizon of a Van Gogh landscape… That’s Fyrskeppet.