Album Review: Blue Film – Lo-Fang

[Originally featured in Leeds Student newspaper]

Pyramid Online

By Jack Kenny


There is a fine line between making the most of your talents and simply throwing everything you know at a project hoping it sticks. With a classical training in cello, violin, bass, piano and guitar, and songs written whilst travelling places like Bali, Cambodia and Tokyo, Baltimore musician Lo-Fang certainly straddles that line on his debut offering Blue Film. And somehow, for the most part, it seems to work.

Lo-Fang – pseudonym of musician Matthew Hemerlein – is certainly not afraid to exploit his wealth of musical training on this record. Opening track ‘Look Away’ quickly segues from twinkling synths into dwindling acoustic guitar and brooding cello, leaving Hemerlein’s falsetto at its most vulnerable. The plucky violin and finger snaps of ‘Animal Urges’ are abruptly replaced by swooping orchestral strings. These juxtapositions are made with such conviction that the listener has little chance to process or…

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