This is Hamburg-based Henning Wandhoff 's third release as Mountaineer. After the release of his first album Sunny Day ,Wandhoff began to itch for collaborators, especially in taking his epic songs into the live environment. After a few years and a few lineup changes he was eventually left with the crack team of Katja Raine , Fiona Mckenzie , Anna Bertermann and Alexander Rischer . When the Air is Bright They Shine harkens to the classic LPs of the late '60s and '70s; 35-40 minutes, ten tracks, every track perfectly realized and the album holding together without filler. Back in those days, t were none of those modern devices used to trick people into thinking they have something a little more worthy than it really is... just pure pop music. He wanted to recreate this, but not make something knowingly retro -- instead, he assembled his album with ten songs that embodied the philosophies of those classic albums without actually mimicking them. The result are leftfield pop gems, ranging in influence from decades of essential music. The album opens with "A Town Called Ivanhoe" -- the track has the best elements of Jim O'Rourke , Kings of Convenience or Jose Gonzalez , while managing to inject its own special bossa charm which carries across the whole album. When we reach "Eliza (A Day for Every Hour)," it's clear Wandhoff has a deft skill in pop songwriting -- this is a track that wouldn't sound out of place on any self-respecting radio show, but what's more it's actually credible, too. As Wandhoff's soft vocals trip and tread over brushed drums and slide guitar it's simply impossible not to fall in love with the music. In cynical times like these it has never been more appropriate to deliver an honest album of great music, music that makes you feel good to be alive. When The Air Is Bright They Shine is exactly that, and its unforgettable sun-drenched moods will take you all the way to paradise and back again.
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