introducing the new album
reviews of aspaklaria
‘Try to get good big speakers to listen to this album… there’s a lot in the production of it… wonderfully fruity synthesizers, great textures, layers and layers of it, a big overall thing that definitely rewards listening to it at a decent volume. You’re missing the point if you’re not hearing the whole thing. There’s a lot of work in this album…’ John Cavanagh, Radio Six International
‘A superb producer… adventurous album.’ The Musician, Spring 2019
‘… beautiful, ethereal CD of effective dichotomies - even the songs, sounding simultaneously innocent and experienced, also function as huge, wide-opened soundscapes’. RnR Magazine
‘Musical pearls’ Wojciech Ossowski, Polish Radio 3
‘Gorna’s strong vision and obvious talent are clearly responsible for Aspaklaria’s success as an album… light and ethereal… Gorna demonstrates her vocal range, which easily extends from warm and earthy through to sharp and airy’. Haydon Benfield, Expert Amateur
‘Musical metaphysics… Seductive ethereal garden of sounds and timbres… It is in this clear lens of Aspaklaria that Jarmila was able to focus the magic of her other-worldly voice with pulsating beats and the incredible, electronically shaped sound expanse… Phenomenal voice…’ Radio Dla Ciebie - Radio For You, Poland
'This voice is special. This girl is incredible. The music is incredible... This girl is going to go far… Beautiful music... very cool...' Rockin Rebbetzin, WSIA Staten Island 88.9fm
‘Is there some Kate Bush in there?’ Radio Afera 98.6MHz, Poland
‘Jarmila is like a musical polymath. She’s a bit like the Ibn Ezra, and although he is a medieval Torah commentator and she’s a modern musician - so there’s quite a gap between them, but in a way it’s very much the same kind of ability to do many, many, many things well, all at the same time without seemingly specialising in one, being super confident in all of them...’ Radio Free Nachlaot
aspaklaria - press release
Having charted new territory with her first album Hashgachah, and its ‘sophisticated soul-bearing vision’, Jarmila Gorna is now pushing her own musical boundaries even further. The critics were so dazzled by her genre-defying album, that it was cited for nomination by the BBC Radio 3 World Music Awards. With Hashgachah reviewers struggled for words to describe the indescribable – rather appropriate for an album of wordless songs. Kate Bush, Chick Corea, Ennio Morricone, ‘an entire Bulgarian choir’, ‘The Beach Girls’ were just some of the comparisons made.
Where do you go from there?
Gorna's new album is the elegantly named 'Aspaklaria' (Aramaic for ‘clear lens’). This time, inspired by a lifetime’s spiritual quest for Hebraic mysticism, self-penned lyrics poured forth. ‘My songs on Aspaklaria are songs of love and fear, of one's personal shattering and self-reconstructing, of questions asked and perhaps answers given, of getting connected and staying connected, of reaching to the heavens and reaching for the stars'. Wanting to push beyond the luxury and safety of the abstract, Jarmila is gathering the clouds into concrete form.
All the things reviewers liked most in the debut album are still present. The magic of her almost extraterrestrial voice and the emotionally gripping way she uses it - combined this time with contemporary beats, electronic sounds, stirring grooves and unexpected song structures.
Aspaklaria is almost single-handedly the work of one woman – written, performed, produced and engineered by a true ‘Polly Math'! She is assisted by the inimitable David Farren, founder member of Bad Manners. Farren also created the album artwork and graces the music with his electric guitar brushstrokes. The music was recorded in her studio which was originally set up with the kind assistance of old friend and mentor, Philip Bagenal of Eastcote Studios (Adele's ‘21’). Mixed by Grammy award-winning engineer Matt Lawrence (Mumford & Sons' ‘Babel’), mastered by the multiple Grammy-nominated Stuart Hawkes (Amy Winehouse's ‘Back to Black’, Lorde's ‘Pure Heroine’). Larry Holcombe added his production flair.
You may hear a vocal-dominated art pop, pop crossover, electronica and IDM, rock and a trip-hop vibe… You may detect warped echoes of drum & bass, deep house, or even grime as well as an occasional bass wobble… phew!... but Jarmila Gorna once again eludes all attempts at easy classification. All those eager for fresh musical experiences will not want to miss out on this. Here is a multi-talented artist in her element doing what she likes best.