Marble Sounds

| Milla

It’s now almost 3 years ago that Marble Sounds decided to go a different musical way and delighted us with the wonderfully beautiful ‘Tautou’. With their latest newborn ‘

The Advice to Travel Light’, Pieter Van Dessel and his crew are taking a well – aimed stab at sounding the way a warm, powerful pop album should sound. Of course, without having to compromise on what has now become the quintet’s unmistakable trademark – a healthy dose of melancholy. And they’ve hit the bullseye.

The inspiration for ‘The Advice to Travel Light’, a metaphor for travelling with only a few pieces of luggage, came from Van Dessel’s two-year stay in Canada. “Moving with only a few items creates a feeling of liberation, almost non attachment. You learn to live without the excess burden, both literally and figuratively, and that brings out your inner optimist. Don’t carry too much in your proverbial backpack, because that also means there’s not much holding you back. I needed to put that feeling into the album,” says the frontman. And that train of thought seamlessly connects the beginning (the title track) and the end (‘One Last Regret’).

Without a producer and isolated in his cocoon, Pieter Van Dessel decided to do things differently. “I didn’t want to complicate things this time and remain loyal to the demo tapes, where I had crafted things together with small sounds. For example, our drummer Mattijs Vanderleen recorded the drums in his own rehearsal space and we’ve worked that into three songs. And we’ve kept the guitar line that I first played on ’39′. Every minor sound, every slide on the frets could never be re-done.”

„Vintage Marble Sounds” as he likes to call it. In other words: unpolished pop songs with a mix of instruments and a heart that is still filled with melancholy. “You need to be able to hear us fiddle around and play with improvisation in the studio. On the other hand, we were working towards a wider and more solid sound. It’s Jo Francken who managed to make the album sound solid without squashing it.

‘The Advice to Travel Light’ is more than ever a return to the roots of Marble Sounds. Introspective guitar songs backed by strings, glockenspiel, drums and keyboards that dwell in an atmosphere of layered “bricolage pop”. Like no other, this album manages to get under your skin. The personal lyrics of ‘Speeches’, written for Van Dessels’ youngest daughter, grab hold of you while the catchy refrain of probable single ‘Anyhow (Even Now)’ resonates and quietly allows you to catch your breath. Is it the powerful mix of strings, beats, harmonious vocals and Jean Baudouin’s falsetto (‘The Road’) that lifts the album to great heights? Or is it that impressive ending, not accidentally named ‘One Last Regret’? Soft as a feather and subdued, and then softly dissolving into a sea of widely spun, cinematic carpets of sound. Or how to deal with grandeur with regret and mercilessly throw that proverbial backpack we all carry overboard. It is certainly conclusive evidence to the fact that Marble

Sounds have what it takes for a giant leap forwards, across the country’s borders.

Since last spring, a compilation of our first three studio albums (‘A Collection’) is for sale in Japan. It’s a dream to be able to tour there. Playing live is the cherry on top of everything and the repertory we have built.

With four albums, two MIA nominations, several television performances and YouTube successes with millions of views (‘Good Occasions, The Time to Sleep’) Marble Sounds have become a regular in the Belgian music scene. They convinced larger audiences during gigs at Pukkelpop, a tour in China and an immensely popular radio hit (‘Leave a Light On’). “We have come a long way and we’ve grown a lot as a group. You can do that by working on your confidence and by never taking anything for granted”, claims Van Dessel. They have already managed to travel light. Now they need to start packing for Japan.

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