With a dozen albums to his name, Swedish singer-songwriter Nicolai Dunger has kept a remarkably low profile over the years. Whether his own choice or not, this position does allow him to take bolder steps along the way without having the masses breathing down his neck and that?s exactly what he?s been doing with his A Taste of Ra project.
?Morning of My Life? is the third and final part in what is supposed to be a trilogy. A continuous 40 minute track divided in different, stylistic parts. Without having heard the previous chapters, I can tell you by the sound of this one that it definately hasn?t been a failure.
Dunger is one of very few songwriters left in the vein of Tim Buckley and Robert Wyatt, a pure vocalist, able to connect with the hearts of many without losing it?s raw edge and talented enough to experiment. When he sings his first lines there?s good hope for some goosebumps to rise from your arm?s skin. Rough and intense, Van Morrisson is the name that pops right in to your head when you hear it. An acoustic guitar plays along in a ctachy, dry pattern, violins and an accordion colour the background. It?s gorgeously lush but humble at the same time. As if Dunger?s fighting for something he already lost.
This emotional thread is key here, the moment he probably realizes the loss his universe explodes in a cacophony of broken harmonies whereout a beautiful, aching violin episode evolves. The same lines he sings over and over appear again. ?When we moved to tent and the light was golden and we were young, and the magazine was all there was to bring, and you woke in the night when the birds were singing just for you and the smell of soil and the warm breath overthrew you, ohh it moved you. All there was to it, was the morning of my life.? It?s not just the lyrics, which are beautiful, the way Dunger sings them is close to over-emotional but extremely heartfelt. Goosebump bonanza once again.
The realisation of the loss is followed by desperation as the aching violins rise again to embark on a journey most certainly approved by Godspeed You Silver Mt. Zion and Co.. Brooding strokes of melancholy hanging heavy in the air, Dunger has always been a somewhat heavy hearted brother but this album is simply overwhelming in it?s intensity.
?Morning of My Life? surely isn?t for every hardcore Dunger fan, these levels of experimentation can be exhausting but when you make it through and look back, you can?t deny the beauty in this particular morning. 8/10 -- Joris Heemskerk (14 November, 2007)