Fear and the Framing
In 2010 the Dutch singer-songwriter Jessica Sligter released her critically-acclaimed debut album, Balls and Kittens, Draught and Strangling Rain, on the Hubro label under the name of JÆ. Journalists compared her to Will Oldham, Linda Perhacs, Josephine Foster, Scott Walker, and Morrissey (!), to mention only a few. Now, for her second album, Jessica is leaving the name JÆ behind her and is fronting the project under her real name, Jessica Sligter. In 2011, she released the film-inspired rock album Window's a Fall with a side project, Sacred Harp, but her solo project has always had priority. Jessica has toured extensively in the USA, Scandinavia and Western Europe, and has built up a group of devoted fans. It is not improbable that this new album will expand her number of followers considerably. Jessica still commutes between Norway and the Netherlands, and Fear and the Framing, was recorded with friends from the music scenes in Oslo, Bergen and Amsterdam. Sligter has a unique ability to form intriguing band constellations and to bring out the distinctive qualities of each musician. Jessica has taken a number of radical steps, musically speaking, since her previous solo album. While her debut was folk-infused and acoustic, this album is more electric and sombre. Jessica's characteristic vocals remain the primary focus, but there is something ominous in both her lyrics and the massive, atmospheric soundscape. Fear runs as a theme throughout the lyrics of the album, and the musical scope ranges from utterly naked to more dramatic and abstract songs and moods. Fear and the Framing is a courageous album from a distinctive singer-songwriter of substance. The album was produced by Jessica Sligter, recorded by Juhani Silvola and Jessica in Oslo and Amsterdam, and mixed by Randall Dunn (Splashgirl, Earth, Boris, Black Mountain) at Avast Studio, Seattle.