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Olafur Arnalds - For Now I Am Winter

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For Now I Am Winter

Ólafur Arnalds

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Enigmatic Icelandic composer, multi-instrumentalist, and producer Ólafur Arnalds' major-label debut, the Mercury-issued (and aptly titled) For Now I Am Winter, effortlessly incorporates elements of pop into the budding singer/songwriter's already evocative blend of wistful neo-classicism and icy electronica. Though his work has been seeping into the mainstream of late, with soundtrack contributions to films like Looper and The Hunger Games, Arnalds remains a shadowy figure, and For Now I Am Winter, despite its more commercial leanings, does little to dispel that notion. Helped along by the tasteful orchestrations of American composer Nico Muhly and the fluid and expressive voice of guest vocalist and fellow Icelander Arnor Dan, the lush and lonesome collection falls somewhere between the ambient, string-laden melancholy of Eluvium, the rural soul searching of Bon Iver, and the cosmic opulence of Sigur Rós. Arnalds has cited the changing of the seasons as a key theme here, and while standout tracks like the mesmerizing "Old Skin" and the propulsive and vibrant "Reclaim," both of which toe the line between the playful dynamics of Owen Pallett's Heartland and the elegiac grandeur of Jónsi's Go, definitely hint at the verdancies of spring and summer, this is most certainly a winter's tale, and one that pairs well with Arnalds' more minimalist tendencies. While the four tracks that Dan lends his formidable pipes to provide the most instantly engaging moments on the album, instrumental selections like the quietly lustrous "Only the Winds," the fractured and foreboding "This Place Was a Shelter," and the lovely, bare-bones "Words of Amber" are just as resonant when allowed time to percolate.
© James Christopher Monger /TiVo

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For Now I Am Winter

Olafur Arnalds

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1
Sudden Throw
00:03:16

Nico Muhly, Arranger, Work Arranger - Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

2
Brim
00:04:42

Nico Muhly, Arranger, Work Arranger - Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

3
For Now I Am Winter
00:05:05

Nico Muhly, Arranger, Work Arranger - Nils Frahm, Arranger, Work Arranger - Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist - Arnor Dan, Composer, Vocals, FeaturedArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

4
A Stutter
00:05:09

Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist - Arnor Dan, Vocals, FeaturedArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

5
Words Of Amber
00:03:22

Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

6
Reclaim
00:04:01

Nico Muhly, Arranger, Work Arranger - Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist - Arnor Dan, Vocals, FeaturedArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

7
Hands, Be Still
00:03:39

Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

8
Only The Winds
00:05:21

Nico Muhly, Arranger, Work Arranger - Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

9
Old Skin
00:04:08

Nico Muhly, Arranger, Work Arranger - Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist - Arnor Dan, Vocals, FeaturedArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

10
We (Too) Shall Rest
00:02:06

Nico Muhly, Arranger, Work Arranger - Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

11
Arnalds: This Place Was A Shelter
00:03:50

Nico Muhly, Arranger, Work Arranger - Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Piano, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

12
Carry Me Anew
00:03:30

Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

13
Arnalds, Dan: For Now I Am Winter Nils Frahm Rework
00:04:08

Nico Muhly, Arranger, Work Arranger - Nils Frahm, Arranger, Remixer, Work Arranger, StudioPersonnel - Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Piano, Programming, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Arnor Dan, Composer

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

14
Arnalds, Dan: For Now I Am Winter Kiasmos Mix
00:06:24

Nico Muhly, Arranger, Work Arranger - Addi 800, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Ólafur Arnalds, Composer, Producer, Arranger, Piano, Recording Engineer, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, StudioPersonnel - Arnor Dan, ComposerLyricist - Janus Rasmussen, Producer, Arranger, Recording Engineer, Recording Producer, Work Arranger, StudioPersonnel - Finnur Hákonarson, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Daði Georgsson, Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel

℗ 2013 Mercury KX, a division of Decca Music Group Limited

Album Description

Enigmatic Icelandic composer, multi-instrumentalist, and producer Ólafur Arnalds' major-label debut, the Mercury-issued (and aptly titled) For Now I Am Winter, effortlessly incorporates elements of pop into the budding singer/songwriter's already evocative blend of wistful neo-classicism and icy electronica. Though his work has been seeping into the mainstream of late, with soundtrack contributions to films like Looper and The Hunger Games, Arnalds remains a shadowy figure, and For Now I Am Winter, despite its more commercial leanings, does little to dispel that notion. Helped along by the tasteful orchestrations of American composer Nico Muhly and the fluid and expressive voice of guest vocalist and fellow Icelander Arnor Dan, the lush and lonesome collection falls somewhere between the ambient, string-laden melancholy of Eluvium, the rural soul searching of Bon Iver, and the cosmic opulence of Sigur Rós. Arnalds has cited the changing of the seasons as a key theme here, and while standout tracks like the mesmerizing "Old Skin" and the propulsive and vibrant "Reclaim," both of which toe the line between the playful dynamics of Owen Pallett's Heartland and the elegiac grandeur of Jónsi's Go, definitely hint at the verdancies of spring and summer, this is most certainly a winter's tale, and one that pairs well with Arnalds' more minimalist tendencies. While the four tracks that Dan lends his formidable pipes to provide the most instantly engaging moments on the album, instrumental selections like the quietly lustrous "Only the Winds," the fractured and foreboding "This Place Was a Shelter," and the lovely, bare-bones "Words of Amber" are just as resonant when allowed time to percolate.
© James Christopher Monger /TiVo

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