Most people who have heard of Orenda Fink know her as one half of Azure Ray, but her record, Invisible Ones, says that this lady can stand alone. This singer’s debut disk for Saddle Creek Records is an enjoyable listen and pretty, pretty pretty!
Influenced by her travels to India, Cambodia and Haiti, some of the songs experiment with tribal rhythms and Haitian voices–and succeed quite well. When Fink seeks to stretch her musical range it works and is truly beautiful. She captures a softness that very few people can make work throughout an entire album.
Occasionally with Invisible Ones you find yourself wishing that she got a little more experimental–although it is still lovely. The title track is not the strongest one, and songs that don’t reach out a bit feel a little nya-like, “Blind Asylum.” Part of the comparison Fink can’t help–she has the same cautious, angelic voice–but the musical arrangements either call attention to that “Enya” quality or take it all in another direction–which is far more interesting.
Fink is immediately redeemed in “Les Invisibles,” which features an eerie Haitian chorus of what sounds like children’s voices. Although “spiritual” can be an overused term to describe music, the word captures the feel of this song very well. Music is so much more interesting when it tries to create a mood rather than trying to highlight the music itself. To me, that is what it is all about–and you will definitely find that here.