White Hinterland's Kairos is soothing tranquility with soul power

When Casey Dienel and Shawn Creeden picked the name White Hinterland, maybe they had their reasons, maybe it just sounded cool but it’s definitely appropriate. A hinterland is often an area of rural land separated from urban areas that is often also tied very closely to the city. In other words, a place of solitude and peace that knows it’s roots. It’s all too fitting with White Hinterland’s music. Kairos sounds airy and expansive, free and tranquil. Separate from the hectic and complicated urban lifestyle, yet it utilizes R&B beats and vocals that keep it’s feet grounded in something entirely different.

They make a sound that fits so naturally in with the simplistic life outside cities, yet they use sounds all too familiar with it. Loops, synth and electric guitar come together with basic percussion and Dienel’s chanting, echoing vocals to create a sound that fits better in the forest or at the beach than within the confines of society. White Hinterland makes a sound that emits spirit-soothing psychedelia all while serving to your head-thumping soulful side. “Begin Again” sounds more like an R&B song than anything.

In fact, the easy comparison for White Hinterland is a more experimental, less pop-oriented Feist. Dienel doesn’t mind switching back and forth between chanting lyrics and singing them (pretty well, might I add). While Kairos isn’t as strong as maybe it could have been, White Hinterland still makes an impression and makes it well. If the idea of the music is to be low key, it’s very ok that the album is too. Yet some tracks are clear standouts. “No Logic” is easily their best, with an easy structure and great details (that little guitar riff just gets me). “Icarus” and “Begin Again” are also solid singles with “Cataract” and “Magnolias” playing out Kairos.

White Hinterland doesn’t need to convince me a bit more. They have the chops and the confidence to make great music. Unlike a lot of artists, they seem to know exactly what they want to do. That’s not to say they haven’t left room for growth. Expansion and further experimentation could lead to greater things. If they connect more with their very obvious soulful side, some wonderful things can happen.

Dear White Hinterland,
Of Montreal said it best: “I need a lover music with SOUL POWER.” Plz help me out. Thanks!

Sincerely, Jamie.

White Hinterland – “No Logic” [MP3]

White Hinterland – “Begin Again” [MP3]

White Hinterland – “Cataract” [MP3]

Buy Kairos on Amazon

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