BOOK OF THE FOLDED FOREST
Released on CD and DVD in 2013 by HOME NORMAL
Art and Design by Urban9
Presented in an 8 panel, CD and DVD package, with 6 unique matte-coated double-sided cards,
and a beautiful uncoated A3 poster, all designed by Urban9 himself included in each,
Also featuring 7 films by award winning directors :
Lumacell, Joey Bania, The New Honeyshade, Tippi Tillvind, Elise Baldwin,
and SkinOfTheTree who have produced an astonishing set of films
which will only be available in this package.
Featuring like-minded artists such as Danny Norbury, Aaron Martin,
Paddy Mann (Grand Salvo) Jessica Constable, Eva Puyuelo (Savath Y Savalas – Warp),
Keiron Phelan (Leaf label luminary), Katie English (Isnaj Dui), Lori Scacco, Joanna Joachim, Frederic Oberland, Hinny Pawsey, Barry Leake, Phil White, Heidi Elva, and Cyril Secq.
His electro-acoustic laptop-folk is woven from microscopically processed melodies,
or even from just sounds emitted by all kinds of instruments that happen to fall into his hands.
This music possesses a rare sense of intimacy, peace and beauty,
but without ever falling into maudlin sentimentality.
It will take me some time to absorb the subtlety of the music it contains and to find the proper words –
in order to avoid just bluntly repeating “beautiful” over and over.
It pulls you out of the breakneck pace of modern life and into the micro-world of a silent mind.
I believe I have never seen a more touching, concise, and at the same time, more precise illustration
of the well-known (but which doesn’t make it any easier to achieve) maxim, “Love is giving”.
Book Of The Folded Forest is actually a mature and dense wood,
which spans without difficulty the pitfall of bland linearity that may be related to these genres.
If a disc can match the atmosphere of a place,
it is of great revelation to place it at the heart of wet wood.
The music knows a tropism toward a wild delicacy.
Displaying the right amount of pain and restraint, caressing the nerves and makes the heart tremble.
One autumn dedicated to last more than a single season record.
Manon Torres|Des Cendres A La Cave
As in all of his precedent releases, Orla Wren delivers here a sound of incredible tactility and haunting beauty
but overall the 13 compositions are much more ambitious and far-reaching in their scope
compared to anything he’s done before.
All the tracks are so carefully orchestrated, so delicately constructed
that exploring them feels like walking inside that mysterious forest where you meet spirits
and ghosts from the past who appear and disappear as you follow the path.
The first song ‘The words under the wood’ is quite representative of the overall album,
not that each number will follow the same formula (far from it in fact),
but it demonstrates quite beautifully the scope and compositional breadth of Orla Wren’s musical and poetic vision.
The opening tones and sounds are so delicate that they conjure iridescent images of ice crystals melting on the surface of grass blades as if softness had suddenly been attached to a shell.
Using diminutive melodic lines, field recordings and digital processing combined in wonderful kaleidoscopic motifs.
Conjuring a world of such graceful and restrained beauty that time seemed suspended
as the life of a microscopic ecosystem ebbs and flows in slow-motion.
All the compositions are so open-ended, the main melodic motifs often buried
beneath undulating veils of processed field recording and very tactile electronics,
that listening to them multiple times leads to vastly different aural experiences.
This is one of the main strengths of the album, nothing is clearly explicit,
emotions are not forced upon the listener but suggested in the most understated way,
so making the experience of this imaginary folded forest is like walking through an always changing landscape.
In a way, Orla Wren explores here the indecipherable folds and mysteries of memories,
how one never comes back to the exact same place twice,
only accessing retrieved moments through the changing filter of emotions,
in fleeting parts more than in solid blocks of narrative.
The album feels nostalgic and mournful on the surface and yet after a while
I can see how beneath this veil of sadness and despair
run powerful undercurrents of happiness and hope.
It’s perhaps what Orla Wren wanted, to make an album simply reflecting the complexity of our nature, to make an album about what it is to be human.
If that’s the case then he’s more than succeeded in his endeavours
but more importantly he’s done it with such grace and humbleness
that it is almost impossible to resist the quiet beauty of his musical world.
Pascal Savy|Fluid Radio
Loss unlinked me from you / While friends lit fires for me /
On the upward swing, ringing / I found myself alive, breathing – Orla Wren