Jonatan Nästesjö hails from Jönköping in Sweden and uses the woodland area in his homeland as a source of inspiration for his experimental project. Using the (entirely appropriate) moniker of Woodchucker, ‘Leaves Never Leave’ is a charming collection of largely instrumental music where nature and melody are joined in harmony.
For ‘I’ll Tell You A Story’, the faraway vocals are reminiscent of the skewed pop of His Name Is Alive whereas ‘Fields’ is a lengthy drone excursion given shades of lights by bird noise. Yet, however fascinating his experimentation sounds, Nästesjö tends to fare best the more he sticks to a structured framework. On the gorgeous ‘At My Windows’ there are ghosts of animated childrens’ programmes as acoustic guitars compete with primitive alien noise whilst ‘Waiting For Bus And Boat’ is a wonderful moment of romantic bliss.
Nästesjö has been touring with fellow Swede David Wenngren (from Library Tapes) whose distinctive music is also inspired by his environment. Yet perhaps his nearest soundalike is Mole Harness, another exponent of the nature vs electronic/acoustic sound. Either way, Nästesjö has much to offer in his own right on this highly evocative and enjoyable album.
July Skies, Epic45, Mole Harness, Library Tapes