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AMANDINE – This Is Where Our Hearts Collide (FatCat)

Posted: November 5th, 2005, by Simon Proffitt

Let’s say that one night you come round to my place, just to hang out. No real purpose. Sometimes it’s nice just to spend time in someone else’s house. And while I go and put the kettle on, This Is Where Our Hearts Collide by Amandine is playing on the stereo, and it’s playing slightly louder than it ought to be, really, loud enough so that you have to raise your voice everso slightly in order for me to hear what you’re saying. After it’s finished, we both get that feeling that it’s s shame there isn’t more – neither of us are losing our minds over it, but when it’s over, there’s simply a vague sense of loss. It’s created a nice, warm easy-going reflective mood perfect for drinking tea to that I can’t really sustain with any of my other records. Everything else I’ve got is either too harsh, too minimal, cold, depressing, or intrusive. So I put it on again, and it’s comforting to be vaguely familiar with it second time round. Now – this is the interesting bit – when I tell you what it is you’re listening to, you are totally amazed by two facts:

1. It’s on FatCat records, supercool Brighton based home to such left field artists as Black Dice, Animal Collective, Janek Schaefer, Ultra-Red, Xinlisupreme etc.
2. The band are from Sweden.

You are amazed, because This Is Where Our Hearts Collide is a thoroughly pleasing collection of gentle, intimate and uplifting alt-country Americana. Olof (God, I wish I was called Olof) has a wonderful, fragile-but-noble voice, and he’s backed by breezy guitars, melancholy piano, accordians, banjos, a trumpet and some poignant strings. Most of the songs actually sound like sea-shanties. There’s certainly a sense of traditional folk about this. It’s the kind of music that I’d love to see live in a small coffee shop in small-town US. Or maybe a small, darkly lit chapel. Whatever, there’s an intimacy about this that would be ruined in a large venue. Which, in a way, is a shame, because the more people that hear this the better.

FatCat Records

Simon Proffitt

Simon was born near Clowne, Derbyshire and is now an honorary Welshman. In former guises he has created fake diamonds, developed ultra-high-capacity storage devices and been one half of slow-moving, ├╝ber-pretentious record label Fourier Transform. He now spends his evenings recording silence and banging kitchen utensils.


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