It could be argued that the most beautiful music is usually the most melancholic, where the instruments are soft and the vocals whisper and weep.
By that standard, Adelaide-born and Berlin-based Jian Kellett Liew’s latest release A Book Of Flying could be hung in an art gallery.
Released under the moniker Kyson, A Book Of Flying is an album of quasi-futuristic folk, a mix of Oliver Tank and Bon Iver. Kyson takes a minimalist approach to the music – songs rarely consist of anything more than guitar, gentle echoes of vocals, and electronic phantoms fading in and out like the background of some city of the future. Tracks like ‘As The Mind It Changes’, ‘Flightless’, ‘You’ and ‘Black Dreaming’ capture a feeling of solitude, drawing a parallel with today’s world of connectivity where we are each isolated by and with our devices.
The purely instrumental electronic songs of ‘Thank You For Everything Part II’, ‘Latvia’ and ‘Outro / If Our Love Was A Movie’ create beautiful and calming soundscapes, and wouldn’t feel out of place in either a meditation class or the Blade Runner remake.
A Book Of Flying could so easily have been a failed marriage between the genres of folk and electronic. Instead, Kyson’s songwriting ability and restrained approach to his music has resulted in an album of heartaching, melancholic beauty.
Kyson’s A Book Of Flying is out now through Friends Of Friends.