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Thus Owls grew out of the marriage between Swedish singer Erika and Canadian guitarist Simon Angell and are now a fleshed-out Montreal band with two other Quebec-based members and a Swedish bass player.
On the group's third album, Erika Angell's voice and keys player Parker Shper's synths create a vast and eccentric yet oddly delicate sonic world into which Erika pours poetic lyrics based on stories from her grandmother.
Her voice recalls Kate Bush in the melody of sparse piano-based opener As Long As We Try A Little, and Chrissie Hynde on the talkier How, In My Bones. She often employs her voice instrumentally, using nonsensical, mildly alarming and creepy vocalizations; it's a striking technique, though made less effective by its frequency.
Now and then we are left with only Erika Angell and a reverby autoharp, making us wonder what she would sound like backed by a medium-sized (as opposed to tiny or epic) sound.
Top track: As Long As We Try A Little