Jacob Faurholt & Sweetie Pie Wilbur - Queen Of Hope

10 songs
32:50 minutes
***** ****


Singer/songwriter is such a cliché that Jacob Faurholt is probably also becoming tired of. Anyone writing songs and performing them should fall under that category, but as long as people need styles to be able to make themselves a mental image of a band, we won't get past this obstacle. Jacob Faurholt and his band Sweetie Pie Wilbur are from Denmark, a country where people seem to have an affinity for moody sad folk music, or how can we explain that Giant Sand's Howe Gelb chose to live there. It comes as no surprise that Faurholt has already played with Gelb, and this is also already a clearer indication of what to expect. Faurholt is playing subdued acoustic guitar and harmonica, and singing of course, with a melancholic, sometimes slightly raspy voice, not at all sounding as if English is just a foreign language to him. Sweetie Pie Wilbur are Kasper Ronberg Schultz who's playing a whole panoply of instruments (guitars, harmonica, glockenspiel, organ, drums, ukulele, melodica and megaphone) and Trine Omo on electric guitar and frail vocals, giving the music an atmosphere of laid back Papas Fritas at times. A whole bunch of guest musicians add choir vocals, saxophone, trumpet and violins, transforming Queen Of Hope into a miniature masterpiece, where subdued folk songs are treated with lush chamber pop elements. It is a quiet album, not unlike what the Norwegians Kings Of Convenience introduced a couple of years ago, and at times we are also reminded of an early, more symphonic Nick Drake. This is a perfect album for lazy summer afternoons (like today while I am writing this), and the shortness of it all can be excused by the fact that Pink Moon was also only half an hour short. You can download a lot of songs on the artist's website, which should give you ample reason to look further into this exceptional album.

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