Song: Marketa Irglova – Quintesssence review

By Phil Scarisbrick

The global pandemic has had a very different effect on a lot of people. The obvious weight of the consequences of dealing with the virus on a personal level cannot be quantified. Be it being infected, losing a loved one or someone close to you, or simply living under the spectre of such an awful infection, nobody who is paying attention has been untouched. A secondary consequence is the abundance of things that we were in short supply for a lot of people pre-Covid. Time, stillness and quietness are three things that we rarely get to enjoy, but lockdown enabled many of us to experience prolonged periods of them for the first time in our adult lives. It is these experiences that led Marketa Irglova to write Quintessence – a sprawling, nine and a half minute ode to Mother Nature.

Such a length for a single can be quite overfacing initially, but the beauty enclosed within makes the experience pass by in a heartbeat. Collaborating with Irglova are icelandic singer, Emiliana Torrini, who provided the enchanting lead vocals, and Aukai who provided parts on Ronroco, an Argentian stringed instrument. There is an inate spirituality to the song, but not in a strictly religious sense – more in the connection between human beings and the natural world. Recorded in her adopted home of Iceland, there could be no finer backdrop to the music that she created with co-producer, Sturla Mio Thorisson.

As things stand, this is appears to be a standalone project, but if there is any more creations of this ilk in the pipeline, then we should all be excited to hear them. Even in the darkest times, beauty will always find a way of finding its voice. Quintessence is proof of this.

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