Title: Væst Ven
Artist: So I’m An Islander
Release Date: 2015 Jan 25
Genre: Ambient / Neoclassical
License: CC BY-SA
Label: Self-Release / BandCamp
So I’m An Islander – Væst Ven is a delightful listening experience. This music is produced by Søren Nissen Jørgensen, who is from the town of Augustenborg located on the island of Als, Southern Denmark. This is a region that I am unfamiliar with, however given the lush, gorgeous music he produces it is a place I now want to visit at least once in my life.
So I’m An Islander – Væst Ven
Væst Ven means “West Wind” in Southern Jutlandic, a dialect of Danish. So, it’s a pretty good indicator that Søren is focusing this work on more nature inspired elements of the island on which he lives.
Using lush string arrangements, and woodwind and light percussion elements he paints portraits of the land and experiences of this region that are as impressive as Jean Sibelius’s Findlandia. However, the difference is these are more intimate and immediate expressions of the land. One can feel the wind blowing through the trees, and see them bending. You can imagine sitting along the coast line, looking out at the ocean.
“Æ Væst Vens Hymn (Hymn of the West Wind)” is a particularly moving piece with a simple piano line that will stay with you for hours, and possibly days. In me it inspires a longing, and stirs up deep passions.
“Få’væl Fastlan (Goodbye Mainland)” starts with disembodied voices that make for an almost mournful feeling, that turns into a processional with the addition of light percussive chimes / bells, and a piano line. By the end of the song you have the feeling of one door closing, while another door opens. It’s an invitation to a new experience.
Every piece on this release is this way for me. Each song paints a different picture, reaches deep into my own experiences and pulls out things that I had forgotten about. Things that I want to experience, or things that I had forgotten even existed within my being.
This is one of those times where it’s difficult to separate tracks out and say I have any favorites. But that isn’t a bad thing in this case: each track is extremely evocative and stirring on a level that I had forgotten was in my being. It’s amazing to be able to find so many things out about myself through another persons interpretation of their environment and their experiences. That’s why this release garners 9 stars: it’s an endlessly fascinating work that I find myself having a different, and often profound, experience with on each listen.