Nights are longer, leaves dying upon their branches at the acceptance of cold air, and an unexplainable feeling of nostalgia mixed with melancholy enters the soul with a welcome invitation.

We need an album that satisfies the desire to transition into the encroaching winter, and what better than Konradsen’s “Saints and Sebastian Stories”. The Norweigian duo pull pathos from their northern roots on their debut album to disperse warmth and intimacy that arrives like that smell of the heater being turned on for the first time all year. The backbone of Konradsen’s sound is the soulful vocals coming from Jenny Marie Sabel back by minimalist piano and atmospheric electronics that help paint a consistent world throughout the project.

The celestial and delicate melodies are reminiscent of Icelandic avante-rock outfit Sigur Rós, but are often more relaxed and personal with a communal narrative often being explored.

Many times the emotion comes to a simmer until it can no longer hold and boils over with expanse electronics (and the occasional sax) such as on the standout track ‘Roasted’ (11). More subdued and wintry mixes can be found in songs ‘Television Land’ (3) or ‘Dice’ (4), which are melancholic-tuned ballads which truly emphasize  that “fall-time feeling”. If you’re finding yourself yearning for a purer, more stripped down delivery – tracks ‘Warm Wine’ (7) and ‘Baby Hallelujah’ (6) offer more familiar instrumentals. The electronic accompaniments were almost always well-placed with the intention of adding to the emotion building across a track; many times this added to the atmosphere and ambiance without sacrificing the “acoustic” theme of the record. 

Grab your autumn sweater, order a hot chocolate, and turn on this album if you’re looking for an excellent fall time listen.

-Calvin Childress