Sometimes, I listen to songs that will distract my brain from the monotony of day to day life. Other times, I play tunes that I believe will take me on a journey, stuff that I have to deeply and emotionally invest in that invokes a whole host of thoughts and feelings. And occasionally, I find a piece of music that combines the two perfectly. I’ve found that today with ŁØ, an incredible mini-album by classical & contemporary guitarist Kevin Daniel Cahill.
There’s so much to love about this that I’m worried I won’t do it justice. The opening track, Aikau!, gently introduces you to a world of beautiful sounds, before pulling the rug out from under you. Few artists can combine such a dynamic range of moments in a piece of music with this level of expertise, and it’s clear that Kevin Daniel Cahill and his fellow musicians, Graham Costello and Abigail Young, know exactly what they’re doing. This song sets the bar very high for the rest of the mini-album, and I’m pleased to say that the quality doesn’t drop from here.
Following on from Aikau!, the delicate Buried At Sea begins to hum from the speakers. Similar in tone to some of the best parts of the latest Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds album, Ghosteen, this song manages to pull on the heartstrings without saying a single word. There’s something deeply human about this music, even though its primary inspiration is the sea and the moon. Then again, who hasn’t stared out at the water or up into the night sky and reflected?
The final track, Io Pt. I, brings things to a close in the best way possible. Fusing Celtic sounds with post-rock mastery, this song sums up everything great about the album. It’s a soaring, inspirational piece of work that practically shakes the ground beneath you as it builds into the final section. You might need to lie down after this one. Once you’ve recovered, I have no doubt you’ll want to press play and listen to it all over again. So, without further ado, I suggest you go and experience this for yourself.