The Stolen Moon is the vehicle that showcases the talents of Armenian Cypriot singer-songwriter Arda G. When listening to the newest offering, entitled, “Minutes Into Years” from this little indie folksinger, you’ll find yourself winding around her songs with parabolic strides. Starting by only seeing a couple of intriguing pieces, you will cautiously twist around the intricacies of Arda G’s art, and then find you’ve discovered more gold in the pan with each successive listen.
Hear it once and you’ll discover ‘You’re Not You Lately’ and ‘Parallel Universe’. Listen twice and ‘Grandma’s Minute’ and ‘Dead End Waltz’ will have nestled comfortably into your subconscious.
Listen three times and something pungent and overwhelming starts to happen. The previously inconsequential melodies seem to start the task of burying themselves from the layers of elaboration into your subconscious.
By your fifth or sixth time through you start to wonder whether or not this might be the most original indie folk album you’ve heard recently. And by your second day, when you haven’t turned off the media player for 24 hours straight, you are quite sure that some genius is buried within the simple mysterious cover.
There is more in this one little album, in terms of poetry, lyricism, rhythm, melody, passion, intellect, and groove than you will find in any 10 albums randomly chosen in any store. While I admit I hail from the more fanatical end of the music spectrum, there is no denying that this woman’s fingers and voice are exceptionally skilled at their practice.
Appreciating “Minutes Into Years” requires a bit of attention though; there are no easy hooks or obviously looped clips here. Arda is a storyteller who more often than not weaves her narratives between acoustic-guitar driven, or keyboard soundscapes. She goes beyond all expectations, radiating her talents no matter what musical background she’s on.
The textures on the songs are beautiful, intricate tapestries covered in earth tones punctuated by poignant poetical lyrics, and an expressive vocal technique that does not require screaming, shouting or any voice gymnastics.
Arda G has found a way to make her music both accessible, catchy, yet all with the most subtlety and nuance you would expect from a singer-songwriter. Kudos must also go to her graceful band, and solid production who displays a massive palette of timbres.
Bottom line: every track is a standout, a tightly organized arrangement, as Arda & the Stolen Moon coaxes you slyly from the knockout first track until the final closing tune, keeping you guessing the whole time through. After a few listens you’ll get a real feel for the music here and appreciate an artist that is at the top of her game.