V/A – Tempus Arborum

This compilation was released by Ars Auditionis, as a souvenir of the ‘Konzert-Sommernacht’ they organized at the castle of the German village Mansfeld, in July 2002. It was a very special event, hopefully a report and photos will appear at Funprox.com later. On this compilation all three performing bands are to be found, with unreleased tracks: Argine, Sonne Hagal and Forseti. Gae Bolg and Seven Pines are also present on this compilation, they did not play at the festival, but at first it was the intention that they would perform as well. The cd comes in a digipack, with a nice booklet.

The first track is by the excellent Italian formation Argine. Their contribution is called ‘Rifrazioni’, a very pleasant and varied track. It starts with an acoustic guitar, and a soft male voice. Then an uptempo beat enters the song, reminding of their single ‘Memorie’. There is also the warm sound of an old organ. And to make the song complete, female vocals in a few couplets add to the atmosphere.

Next is Sonne Hagal, who recently convinced with their debut album “Helfahrt”. The first song, ‘Wolfszeit’, sounded familiar to me. Of course, it’s a Forseti composition, one of the best songs form their ‘Jenzig” 10″. The Sonne Hagal version is rather solemn and intimate. It consist mostly of strings and multiple voices, which works very well. Their second song has not exactly a short title: ‘The chimney sweeper: a little black thing among the snow’. It is a nice tranquil acoustic song with guitars and flute, and some soft drums towards the end. It has a timeless sound, it’s a nice story for around a campfire.

Forseti also contribute two new songs. ‘Gleichung’ is a nice romantic ballad, with fine strings and guitars, sang in a warm manner by Andreas Ritter. With ‘Eismahd’ Forseti cover Sonne Hagal at their turn. They do a decent version of this nice neo-folk song, which has a pleasant melody.

The tracks by Gae Bolg (‘Magic and ecstasy’) and Seven Pines (‘Waves II’) spoil the serene atmosphere a little with their ‘humorous’ medieval bombast. I have heard far better ‘trumpet-and-church-organ’ work of them, these tracks add nothing to the compilation. But the first songs of this “Tempus Arborum” compilation are very worthwile, and also a nice souvenir of a successful festival. When I listen to this cd and I close my eyes, I’m back again at the castle of Mansfeld…

artist: V/A
label: Ars Auditionis
details: 7 tracks, limited to 999 copies