1 Lake 4:22
2 Hands 4:32
3 Run With The Wolves 2:47
4 Places 4:05
5 Breathe 3:56
6 Lay Down 4:34
7 The Dive 2:34
8 Eyes Skin Moves 4:34
9 Burning 4:14
10 Saint Fly (Kaca & Sara) 5:09
11 Zero 4:05
12 Femme Fatale 4:36
13 Hands (Acoustic Version) 3:46
14 Places (Roman Fiordmoss Remix)Remix – Roman Fiordmoss 3:11
The final two new tracks on the reissue of Never Sol’s late-2013 release Under Quiet truly display the expansiveness of her electro-folk aesthetic. “Hands (Acoustic version)” keeps the spotlight on and enhances Never Sol’s diminutive melodies and often haunting deliver, while Roman Fiordmoss’ Remix of “Places” places the electronic textures and southern hip-hop breaks atop those innocuous soundscapes.
Born, bred and receiving a classical musical education in the Czech Republic, Sára Vondrášková (the artist behind the Never Sol alias) has been able to avoid the sonic trappings of trending genres, truly embarking on her own aural journey with this debut full-length. The approach is all her own, but intermittent similarities to Imogen Heap, Cat Power, anti-folk standout Regina Spektor and the angsty innocence of Fiona Apple keep the album approachable to those cautious of exploring new tunes.
Originally released in September of 2013, Under Quiet is an appropriate description of the album’s early reception. With a miniscule social following, the effort never received the early spark it so deserved; the type of organic trigger that leads curious ears to true evolution. There is truly no sound for which Vondrášková is hesitant to approach. During album opener “Lake,” a stoic piano arrangement and chugging sax are juxtaposed against a West Coast bass bottom-end, the shuffling garage essence is heard during the enchanting vibes of “Places” and a taste of trip-hop flavored with a Theremin surfaces during “Zero.”
Weaving each of the elements back into the lattice of ethereal ivory strokes, the album never fractures amidst the weight of its own elements. However, Vondrášková never establishes a visceral connection at the same magnitude of the aforementioned artists. Her vocals are effortless, which means the listener is never welcomed to her dark side – an edge that is only hinted at during the squealing guitar reverb of “Femme Fatale.” Under Quiet is that first encounter, the one where each party is happy to show their best side, but reluctant to delve into any deeper. The beats are far more avant-garde than her pop contemporaries, the energy is just lacking.
The reissue of Under Quiet is more than deserving of an afternoon’s worth of attention, but unless Vondrášková pulls from a deeper reservoir of emotion, this new career spark will quickly be extinguished.