Amy Duncan – The Hidden World

Album Review | Filly Records | Review by Allan Wilkinson | Stars: 4/5

For her seventh album, The Hidden World, the innovative Edinburgh-born singer songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and photographer takes us on an atmospheric journey through a highly idiosyncratic and poetic landscape.  With ten original compositions, Amy Duncan once again evokes her own highly distinctive sensual world.  Rich in sonic textures, the songs create an intimacy between the artist and the listener, utilising synths, guitar, electric upright bass and piano, with an occasional international feel, notably on the Hindustani flavoured opening lead song, from which the album’s title is derived.

Dreamlike in places, The Hidden World has the sense of being just that, a secret, concealed, distant and unattainable world, ethereal in fact.  Despite her otherworldly mantle, Amy is only too keen to point out that she’s not an alien and like Kate Bush before her, is capable of creating music that is curiously strange but with an invitingly acute pop sensibility, “Make it Good” for example.  On the page, her lyrics read like poetry, meditations, states of mind, yet Amy’s breathy vocal and sumptuous arrangements take those notions to another place altogether. 

Choice Track: The Whole Town (NSV 503)