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And They Have Escaped The Weig


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And They Have Escaped The Weig + For Now I Am Winter + Found Songs
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 8 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Erased Tapes
  • ASIN: B003EGI72A
  • In-Print Editions: Audio CD  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #19,169 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Beautiful! Melancholic but so beautiful. A lot pf these songs really show the serenity of the geography of the place where the composer is from, iceland.
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By Jesse Flemming on Aug. 11 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Amazing album! This is Olafur Arnaulds best release without a doubt!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 22 reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
Arnalds' beautiful music w/ zest added Aug. 15 2010
By William Merrill - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
(4 & 1/2 stars) After greatly enjoying composer Arnalds' previous release, Found Songs, I've also found a lot to like about his new album, called "...and they have escaped the weight of darkness." As before, the center of these instrumental themes is Mr Arnalds' piano, although Weight of Darkness also highlights a chamber ensemble more, and sometimes even moves into a relatively traditional rock music area (with Tony Levin on bass!). Plus there are both subtle and more obvious electronic touches mixed in to add atmosphere. These are often deceptively simple melodies that remind me somewhat of Ryuichi Sakamoto's soundtrack work. I.e., so much is unspoken or "between the notes." However, sometimes the themes are more complex and played out on a larger stage, as on "Gleypa Okkur," which starts with just the piano and builds to a more majestic level (with rock instrumentation - an electric guitar, even?), before dropping back off to a quieter finish. Where Found Songs was consistently stark and minimal, Weight of Darkness often uses a more standard melodic structure. As beautiful as this music is, it didn't move me quite as much as Found Songs did. However, it's still an impressive collection of instrumentals.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Ólafur Arnalds' best work, bar none! March 8 2011
By V.D.M. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I believe that Iceland is a magical place unlike any other in the world. The water brings eternal life. The landscape is barren yet gorgeous in all its emptiness. You can even reach the center of the earth from Iceland. But what amazes me the most is the amazing people that Iceland has spawned. First Sigur Ros, and now this wonderful musician, Ólafur Arnalds. He has released one album and a few EPs over the past few years, but "...and They have Escaped the Weight of Darkness" is by far his most elegant, haunting work. If you are in doubt, please listen to "Hægt, kemur ljósið", "Tunglið", and, of course, the Icelandic-titled title track, "Þau Hafa Sloppið Undan þunga Myrkursins". This music may not have vocals, but it is not the "new-age dread" you might think it is. This is a highly recommended release from an extremely talented artist.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Headphone Commute Review Feb. 8 2011
By Headphone Commute - Published on Amazon.com
As I sit down to write these words I can't help but wonder if there was a time lapse in my memory - haven't I covered this before? I could have sworn I shared my excitement for this album in the past - after all, I hungrily consume everything by Ólafur Arnalds since his 2007 debut on Erased Tapes, Eulogy For Evolution. Well, if I haven't shared my enthusiasm for this release, I apologize... Profusely... Incredibly lovely, sad and beautiful, music from Arnalds will melt the toughest hearts. If melancholy could be wrapped in sadness drenched in longing, then Arnalds captures it all. This is precisely when words loose their meaning, and the music sings... ...and they have escaped the weight of darkness is a second full-length album from this prolific Icelandic modern classical composer. In places uplifting, and always gorgeous, the contemplative passages escaping Arnalds' fingers on the piano, and the crying stringed instruments, leave the listener reflecting on all that is present in this moment, even if its veiled by the past. You absolutely have to pick up Arnalds' masterpiece, Variations of Static, (Erased Tapes, 2008), as well as his 2009 EP on the same label, Found Songs. It is also worth mentioning that Ólafur's 2009 album, Dyad 1909 was selected in Headphone Commute's Best of 2009 : Music For The Film behind Closed Eyelids. Recommended!!!
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Much Much More Than the Sum of Its Parts Feb. 7 2011
By Glenn Soltes - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This music proves that less is sometimes more. These simple yet lush pieces strike a certain emotional chord.....

Olafur also dares to use empty space in very effective ways.
Perhaps the best use of subtle and very beautiful background sounds I have heard in a long time.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Yet Another 5-Star Album July 25 2012
By Pie Grrrl - Published on Amazon.com
This is a two-part review: first, my words. Then, the copied and pasted review of James Allen for Rovi<<full credit given. I decided to include James' review because it was comical and also bang-on in the technical part, which I'm not schooled enough to write.

Mine: I am STILL shocked to know that Olafur is ONLY 25 years old and has created this catalog of over eight albums! I find that I gravitate much more to the wordless albums than the ones with words worked into the mix as found sounds. I am NOT adverse to using speech as a sound; one of my ALL TIME FAVOURITE albums is "Different Trains" by Steve Reich. But, for reasons unknown to me, whenever one of the pieces in other Olafur's albums comes on with speech, it takes me away from the blissful state of mind that his music places me into. Like "Found Songs" and "Eulogy for Evolution", this album "takes me away". It's classical in nature but not stuffy, boring or dull. I love the use of piano, violin and cello (the latter my favourite instrument). To my ear, his albums are what it must sound like in Heaven.

I'm lucky: I have a grandfathered Zune membership that gifts me 10 FREE downloads per month, to keep as MY OWN, so I already have 'bought' 10 of his songs. And since his albums are so short, usually less than 10 pieces, I'm on my way to owning 1/2 of another album.

This album is another one of those peaceful and serene works of art that you can use in so many ways: meditation, background, eyes closed and immersion into the music, etc. I feel blessed that I discovered Olafur's music via the TV show, So You Think You Can Dance. See, TV is NOT just a "vast wasteland!" :)

James Allen's review for Rovi: "They must be putting something in the water over there in Iceland that makes musicians work in unexpected ways. Their biggest pop and rock exports -- Björk and Sigúr Ros, respectively -- have borne very little relation to what the rest of the world thinks of as pop and rock, so why should their most promising young neo-classical composer be any different? At an age when most young men are still trying to decide between grad school and the night shift at Denny's, Olafur Arnalds has already made a name for himself as a musical maverick who skirts the edges of the classical, rock, electronic, and avant-garde worlds with enthusiastic ease, a Nico Muhly with a higher tolerance for cold weather, if you will. On his second full-length release, Arnalds moves further away from electronics to embrace a more acoustically oriented approach centered on piano and strings. Electronics do play a supporting role -- they're simply used to enhance the atmosphere here and there, but in the main, Arnalds is creating 21st century chamber music here, as the piano makes simple, elegant statements whose harmonic possibilities are further fleshed out by the strings. And Arnalds may be a modernist in terms of pushing stylistic boundaries, but he still has some old-school, downright romantic notions about melodic movement -- you won't find any polytonality or serial music among these tracks. Arnalds prefers instead to repurpose old-school harmonic conventions in a new context, offering the listener a readily accessible emotional connection but still breaking new ground. And on the few strategic spots in the album where Arnalds drops in drums and/or electric guitar and repetitive motifs, the effect is not dissimilar to the headier moments of the aforementioned Sigúr Ros, or perhaps early-`70s Pink Floyd at their most ethereal, showing the rock crowd that they too have a point of entry into this music." by James Allen for Rovi

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