- Glitterhouse Records
After her theatre production Püwawau and an album and tour with Distance, Light & Sky (with Chris Eckman from the Walkabouts and her partner Eric Thielemans) Chantal Acda took some time off to search in her soul for inspiration for her 4th solo-album. While Chantal’s three previous solo albums were immaculately produced by two luminaries of the so-called “post-classical” scene (Nils Frahm, Peter Broderick and Phill Brown respectively), “Saturday Moon” is a more feral child and is all the stronger for it. Caution is thrown to the wind and the emphasis is now on instinct and what is discovered from the get-your-hands-dirty process of just doing things. This time she decided to produce the album herself to start with a clair vision: one microphone, one voice. But then she started connecting and reconnecting with people who she really loved musically. With nobody producing and telling her to stop. The recording became a celebration of a part of her that is quite chaotic and impulsive. For example for first song and title track “Saturday Moon” drummer Eric Thielemans supple groove sets up Congolese guitarist Rodriguez Vangama’s gorgeous soukous flourishes which sets up the Puwawau singers’s (a dutch classical choir) soaring vocalizations on the refrain. It is a free spirited mix of things, that maintains an elegant coherence because of Chantal’s always assured songwriting, arranging and vocal presence. The album continues to spin and turn and upend preconceptions throughout its length. There are sonic surprises like Alan from legendary indie heroes Low’s guitar synth on “Disappear,” a song that ends in a tornado of electricity and also features backing vocals from Low bandmate Mimi. Atmospheric guitar legend Bill Frisell delicately converses with two tracks. Shahzad Ismaily of Tom Waits and Marc Ribot fame plays haunted six string fractures on one of the album’s darkest songs “Conflict of Minds”, together with Borgar Magnason (Sigur Rós, Björk).
There are eighteen musicians in total on the album. Strings, horns, contrabass and piano are also woven into the kaleidoscopic, eclectic mesh. Through all of the diverse sonic shapeshifting and emotional ground covered on “Saturday Moon” Chantal may have at last discovered her natural musical home. One that includes many sympathetic collaborators but at the same time is not boxed in by other people’s agendas and expectations.
This is her most personal record to date.