D. Gwalia – In Puget Sound

puget ‘Gloriously morose’ is a term which could be used to describe an awful lot of the music I listen to, and it most certainly applies here.  This is an album of deep, dark songs which positively wallows in its bleakness, and honestly, it’s bloody gorgeous.

Had I any sort of a commercial head on my shoulders I really would have written about this album before I put tickets for our New Year’s House Gig on sale, in order to persuade you to come along, but organisation and commercial common sense have never been strong points around these parts.

Gwalia’s voice is low and unhurried, which gives the music an even greater sense of foreboding, and there are beautiful strings here and there to add depth and gravitas.

Song-wise In Puget Sound really is very strong indeed. Orson Welles seems to be part of the introduction to the album, following on from the instrumental opener and building slowly into a gorgeously sinister duet. And by the time you get to Black Current you’ll struggle not to be utterly engrossed. It’s not the sort of album where you point and go ‘ah, super pop smash’, but this tune is the one which truly stuck with me after only the first listen and brought me back to this album time and again.

In fact, as a one-two-three you’ll struggle to beat Black Current, Letter to Tiger and All Avenues on any album this year. It doesn’t tail off though, and of the thirteen songs on this album there is barely so much as a weak moment. Admittedly music this languorous and dark can get a little wearing if you aren’t in the mood, and there are certainly times when I’ve put the album on only to look around at my companions baffled faces and promptly put something a little more jolly on.

Nevertheless, if you want your music to wallow in its own atmosphere of doom then this record is just about perfect for you. It’s simply done, and doesn’t feel like a particularly huge budget production, but the execution is absolutely spot on. You can have a listen on the player below and buy the CD from D. Gwalia’s Bandcamp page.