Album Review: Dania O. Tausen – Ja/Nei

I’ve actually already reviewed half of Faroese singer songwriter Dania O. Tausen’s album Ja/Nei og restin av vikuni. Back in July she released the ja half of the album as an EP, which I ran the rule over. I was so blown away by it that when the chance to complete the story came along, I jumped at it.

By Graeme Smith

Feature photo by Gwenael Akira Helmsdal

Ja/Nei og restin av vikuni translates into English as “yes/no – and the rest of the week.” The whole album is written and sung in Faroese, but don’t let that put you off if you can’t speak a word of it (like I can’t). Its emotional stories and pop sensibilities are universal. It is, of course, an album of two halves, contrasting healthy thoughts and behaviours with dark and ugly ones, but there’s plenty of room for grey areas in it too.

You can check out what I had to say about Ja here. The first half ended with the triumphant farewell that is og tað er bara tað but in the context of the full album, it’s simply an au revior. Nei picks up the story with eg eri ein mynd. It’s a delicate and meditative re-entry, rich with percussive textures and Dania’s unmistakably expressive vocals. A raw and intimate first verse gives way to a lush and expansive arrangement and I found myself excited by Dania’s sound all over again.

Nú eru vit tvey fólk takes things in an acoustic direction with a bittersweet and wistful moment. Tú pjøvist ikki at leggja alt tú hugsar á facebook is a short, choral vignette before aftan á ein langan arbeiðsdag which is pulsing and reflective. Minimal textures comes and go, giving Dania’s vocals plenty of space in which to expand and showcase their charisma. It’s a highlight.

Vit bíða at breyðið skal poppa is a brooding soft folk rock number with a pleasant surprise around each of its sonic corners before finishing big. Eg vil frysta løtuna then closes the album with a team up with Ragnar Finsson and some cantering, swaggering psych rock. It’s simply staggering the range of sounds that Dania squeezes into her music. It’s a final highlight.

Ja/Nei og restin av vikuni is out now via Tutl Records. You can give it a listen below.