Sjakal - 'Waking Dream' EP
We're trying to feature a real cross -section of musical styles at the moment, so after LOCALS, it's nice to change the atmosphere completely and write about a new artist who's power comes from the intimacy of her songwriting.
Sjakal is originally from Sweden, but is now based in Copenhagen, and in terms of similar musical styles she has more in common with 'Wy' perhaps (incidentally their new album is released today), and her debut EP is entitled 'Waking Dream', and it was released just 2 weeks ago. This is music created off the back of 'Sjakal's' struggle with sleep deprivation and anxiety, and as you would expect with such a release, the music and words have a personal honesty that will keep you spellbound.
The EP opens with '16th of June', and yes, guitar and vocals are all you're going to get. There is an evident vulnerability and delicacy in the both the vocal and the lyrics, whilst in this track 'Sjakal' has more in common with the approach that someone like Mirel Wagner would take, where the silence in between the guitar chords is as important as the noise itself. 'Drinking from the River' is such a short track, and the beautiful fragile melody is no more than a glimpse, like a fractured dream perhaps. 'Poppyfield' is possibly my favourite track, maybe because of the lyrical quality, but 'Antonia' has a lovely if simple melodic theme, and it has a softness to it that appeals to me. The EP ends with 'Outro' (that's the opposite of an 'Intro'), a dreamy 2 minute fragment of vocals and guitar, as if perhaps Sjakal is settling back into sleep as dawn awakes.
OK so you will know pretty quickly if this isn't the type of music for you, and I accept that not everyone will find this easy to adapt to. But I find Sjakal's music captivating and interesting, the glimpses of melodies soft and inviting. Everyone surely can relate in some degree to anxiety and sleep issues, and Sjakal is therefore able to connect to all of us. This short EP is well worth a listen.