Album Review: Gold Celeste – The Glow

The Glow

gold celeste the glowReleased September 11th 2015

Words: Nick Jacques

Gold Celeste are a threesome from Norway. Their name is inspired from by the beautiful play of colours and lights in the sky during the golden hour, right after sunrise or just before sunset. And as the name of their band suggests, they couldn’t be further from the truth. This is beautiful psychedelic music spun through many rainbow clouds and served at sunset with a cherry on top!

Their debut album, The Glow, consists of 11 nuggets of sublime mind expansive psychedelic harmonies that will embrace those gloomy eye balls of yours and wash out your system and replenish your muse by transporting you to a fool’s paradise.

The overall beautiful detached and kaleidoscopic feel to this album will banish any negative thoughts and instead replace it with a kind of aloofness that will make you not feel the slightest hint of guilt and you will gladly dwell in your own zone and forget about time as a concept. Perfect for those rainy days!

Imagine the Unknown Mortal Orchestra and Tame Impala having a love in and everyone’s invited. This is a psychedelic cannon that’s been thoroughly stuffed with all the right ingredients, achingly prepared by its creators – clearly this has been a labour of love for these Nordic torch-bearers of the Scandinavian music scene. The production and arrangement of these tracks are seeped in reverie, meditative guitar twangs, shoegazing melodies, wispy vocals and lush lo-fi decadence. Each constructed with a sort of sleepy precision – effortless.

Opener Can Of Worms engulfs the senses with generous servings of slowly churned psychedelic pop with its hazy fade in and technicolour trimmings. It’s a pleasant introduction that sets the tone perfectly. One of those tracks that feel like a comfy pair of slippers accompanied with your favourite pipe.

The album also has these cool interludes which give The Glow an even balance (But A Poem & Pastures) whilst adding a pleasing dimension to this batch of lavish laments. Gold Celeste are certainly a band with a conscience. Lyrically their certainly not hanging around either – singing softly and elegantly about injustice, our addiction to fast-food culture and quick short-term solutions to cultural issues – as their band’s synopsis explains on the riot factory website.

The frontrunner track here is the swooning, blissful see-saw Open Your Eyes – it’s filled to the brim with layered dreamy synths, hypnotic vocal pitches and understated drum beats and a languid bass line that gently ripples along with pleasure. The bass plays a very subtle but significant role on this record as a whole – it directs the album in impressive fashion. A gorgeous display of self-indulgence.

The album continues to place the listener under a trance and develops a kind of introspection which one is free to get lost in. The Dreamers is a great example of this – it has the lovely refrain “There’s no turning back” which just lingers in your cerebral cortex, not wanting to leave.

Time Of Your Life is the most “upbeat” track on offer here. It plays out like a joyful skip in the Nordic woods with your mates sprinkled with guitar moans and sunshine harmonies. Is This What You Could Not Do? opens an awesome blissed out guitar attack and screechy feedback, supported with those dreamy Sigur Ros style vocals once more and hypnotic guitar hooks and backed up with rumbling drum beats – you can really immerse yourself in this album.

You & I brings us back down to earth with a “breather” after the hazy heights of the previous tracks. The guitar work on here is disorientating but performed with both elegance and ease. For a debut album they have such a strong and assured sound. They sound like well-honed musicians at the top of their craft.

The last of the interludes On The Brink throws in a lovely bit of contemplative flute play which acts like a gentle nudge to the senses and perks you up a bit before Gold Celeste manage to squeeze in their final opus that is The Start Of Something Beautiful. This is a quivering peach of a track that possesses a swarm of vivid synths and again displays an off-kilter charm that has a certain abstractness to it which you want to curl up to with a glass of your favourite red. The Glow fades out in memorable fashion and makes you want to hit the play button straight away.

A great album that will make you forget about the awful bank holiday weather and get lost in the lights and colours of Gold Celeste – definitely a band to watch out for.

Watch the video for Open Your Eyes here:


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