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Electronic - Released June 25, 2021 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Electronic - Released June 25, 2021 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Alternative & Indie - Released May 21, 2021 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Alternative & Indie - Released May 21, 2021 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Alternative & Indie - Released June 12, 2020 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Alternative & Indie - Released June 12, 2020 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Pop - Released May 21, 2020 | Assent

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Alternative & Indie - Released February 21, 2020 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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First of all, let’s point out that even though Agnes Obel’s fourth opus is titled Myopia, the Berlin-based Dane manages to musically transpose this visual disability using several acoustic treatments that more or less hit their targets. The most blatant example of this is Roscian, a track in three-quarter time that employs a sepulchral piano. Myopia is an album that (not always anecdotally) portrays the adventurous undertaking of moving out of one’s way in order to see a distant reality more clearly, a reality that was previously opaque. In fact, it’s no coincidence that one of the tracks is called Camera’s Rolling: Obel uses this metaphorical development to organically highlight the idea of opening up to the world, and not always settling for such a closed-off environment. For her, the main tool for this opening up is ‘experimentation’. Myopia feels like an extravagant and ethereal laboratory, where the main test subject is the singer’s voice, accompanied by a piano and mostly melancholic synths. Some give their bodies to science; on her part, Agnes Obel has given her voice to music, testing out a plethora of different effects. Like the test tubes of a mad scientist, her singing boldly intersects and blends together, always beautifully harmonic. Her voice is twisted in several different ways, a constant which is at the core of songs which are somewhere between Kate Bush and Scott Walker. She embarked on this adventure alone in her Berlin studio, even though there are moments here and there when a few chords are played by others. There are eerie moments (Drosera and its repetitive chords wouldn’t be out of place in a Dario Argento film), airy moments (Won’t You Call Me with its warm, cosy choirs), ones that evoke the torments of insomnia (Broken Sleep) or death (Island of Doom); her songs astonish above all with their extreme elegance. With Myopia, Agnes Obel hands us a shiny spyglass with which we can clearly see the beauty of why she seems to exist: music. © Nicolas Magenham/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released February 21, 2020 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

First of all, let’s point out that even though Agnes Obel’s fourth opus is titled Myopia, the Berlin-based Dane manages to musically transpose this visual disability using several acoustic treatments that more or less hit their targets. The most blatant example of this is Roscian, a track in three-quarter time that employs a sepulchral piano. Myopia is an album that (not always anecdotally) portrays the adventurous undertaking of moving out of one’s way in order to see a distant reality more clearly, a reality that was previously opaque. In fact, it’s no coincidence that one of the tracks is called Camera’s Rolling: Obel uses this metaphorical development to organically highlight the idea of opening up to the world, and not always settling for such a closed-off environment. For her, the main tool for this opening up is ‘experimentation’. Myopia feels like an extravagant and ethereal laboratory, where the main test subject is the singer’s voice, accompanied by a piano and mostly melancholic synths. Some give their bodies to science; on her part, Agnes Obel has given her voice to music, testing out a plethora of different effects. Like the test tubes of a mad scientist, her singing boldly intersects and blends together, always beautifully harmonic. Her voice is twisted in several different ways, a constant which is at the core of songs which are somewhere between Kate Bush and Scott Walker. She embarked on this adventure alone in her Berlin studio, even though there are moments here and there when a few chords are played by others. There are eerie moments (Drosera and its repetitive chords wouldn’t be out of place in a Dario Argento film), airy moments (Won’t You Call Me with its warm, cosy choirs), ones that evoke the torments of insomnia (Broken Sleep) or death (Island of Doom); her songs astonish above all with their extreme elegance. With Myopia, Agnes Obel hands us a shiny spyglass with which we can clearly see the beauty of why she seems to exist: music. © Nicolas Magenham/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 29, 2019 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Alternative & Indie - Released October 29, 2019 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Alternative & Indie - Released January 26, 2018 | Play It Again Sam

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Electronic - Released October 6, 2017 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released May 26, 2017 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released March 3, 2017 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released February 3, 2017 | Play It Again Sam

Berlin-dwelling Dane Agnes Obel has been racking up the accolades throughout mainland Europe since her platinum-selling 2011 debut, Philharmonics. With the beguiling Citizen of Glass, her third studio long-player, she looks poised to enchant the rest of the world with her dark charms. A classically trained pianist with an elegant and elastic voice, Obel's melancholic chamber pop invokes names like Goldfrapp, Bat for Lashes, and Anna Calvi, but with a succinct aura of Scandinavian refinery. Where her relatively austere prior outings relied largely on piano and strings, Citizen of Glass revels in ghostly electronics and voice modulation, even going so far as to bring in a temperamental, late-'20s monophonic synthesizer called a Trautonium. The string arrangements are more ambitious and the composition style is a bit more opaque, but the ten-track set is unequivocally Obel-esque. Taking its name from the German concept of the gläserner berger, which translates roughly to the glass citizen, Obel explores the idea of transparency in the overshare-heavy digital age. She also grapples with the death of her father and how those two experiences relate to one another, and the results are both elusive and often incredibly moving. The gothic stateliness of "Trojan Horse" -- think Enya by way of Nick Cave -- the elliptical "Golden Green," and the incredibly seductive single "Familiar," the latter of which sees Obel harmonizing with a pitch-shifted, baritone iteration of her voice, all work on multiple levels, doling out liberal amounts of atmosphere, while remaining remarkably earthbound. Obel's penchant for pairing elements of Elizabethan choral polyphony with millennial angst, not to mention her liberal use of spinet and celeste, would seem pedantic in less skilled hands, but there isn't a single moment on the quietly stunning Citizen of Glass that doesn't feel authentic. © James Christopher Monger /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released November 18, 2016 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released October 21, 2016 | Play It Again Sam

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Following the wonderful debut album, Philharmonics (2010), and the grandiose sophomore attempt, Aventine (2013), the latest album from Agnes Obel proves beyond a doubt that the Danish artist based in Berlin certainly isn’t resting on her laurels, determined to further evolve her unique musical style with Citizen of Glass. Obel has revisited a number of previous compositions and created some genuinely novel sounds with what is a clear (and successful) attempt to go deeper into the emotional heart of her music. On tracks like Familiar, for example, her haunting vocals are paired with none other than herself – and who’d have thought the result so beautiful. Bigger, and more nourishment than ever before for our musical hungers. Sound is like matter in this wonderfully orchestrated third album.
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 19, 2016 | Play It Again Sam

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Alternative & Indie - Released October 7, 2016 | Play It Again Sam

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Agnes Obel in the magazine
  • The paradox of Agnes Obel's Myopia
    The paradox of Agnes Obel's Myopia With "Myopia", the Danish singer delivers an opus which appears to nevertheless have a clear-cut artistic vision...
  • Obel's Opus
    Obel's Opus What happens when Agnes Obel duets with Agnes Obel…
  • Agnes Obel: Qobuz Interview Video
    Agnes Obel: Qobuz Interview Video With her second album, Agnes Obel once again displays her outstanding talent, playing a wide rage of sophisticated music. Qobuz was lucky enough to conduct an exclusive interview with the Danish Be...