Fully immersing yourself in the world a song can create is one of the most magical things you can do. Letting the sound take you out of your world and into another is an amazing experience, and one you’ll definitely have whilst listening to Tora’s new album, ‘A Force Majeure’.
This album creates a dreamscape you cannot help but sink into. The light electronic elements float above twangy guitars and almost ghostly vocals, to transport us away from the less than appealing reality we’re currently living in.
‘In Deeper’ opens the album and sets a soft, yet haunting mood. Deep piano tones over beneath echoing vocals, as synths colour the track with cool, refreshing hues. There’s an interesting contrast to this track, as the verses feel so sombre, whilst the chorus is light.
This contrast is present throughout ‘A Force Majeure’ expressing just how well Tora balances these elements throughout their intricate production style.
‘Inundated’ has a similar tone to ‘In Deeper’. Popping samples and humming synths give the track a feeling of fullness, whilst twangy guitars add an extra bit of richness. This track is like thick caramel, with its complex flavours moving incredibly slowly as it’s being poured.
‘Put Down Your Phone’ and ‘When Will I Learn’ are similar, in that they both have elements to their melody that feel almost cinematic. ‘Put Down Your Phone’ features samples that quickly dance above sharp guitars. They’re reminiscent of the tapping on a touchscreen phone we’ve all become so accustomed to, bringing a very strong visual element to the track. ‘When Will I Learn’ on the other hand, uses bubbling samples and sharp tones to tell its story. Pointed tones echo over gentle guitar licks and present the image of a glass, falling in slow-motion before smashing on a surface. The sadness and anger behind the vocals only adds to this image, which would almost certainly make for a powerful music video.
Vocal harmonies are constant throughout ‘A Force Majeure’ and ‘How Long’, which features Molly Nicholson, presents a wonderful softness against the melody’s harder structure. The vocal harmonies gently echo beneath the main vocal track, whilst muted tones burst beneath a deep beat. The humming atmospherics seem to caress every element in a smoky cocoon, making the overall sound reminiscent of lightning striking deep within a cluster of clouds.
This idea of embracing softness in a harder shell appears on ‘Metanioa’ as well. Asha Franco’s vocals fully compliment curling tones and humming samples, which give the track an almost floral feel. Crunchy synths then slowly grow around the tones, almost as if it’s infecting the floral notes as it moves. If this song could be described in two words, it would be lusciously demonic, as those crunchy synths really just bring the tone of the song to a whole other level tone-wise.
The lighter songs on ‘A Force Majeure’ are, in a word, mesmerising.
‘Why Won’t You Wait’ feels so vibrant, thanks to the warmer synths and slightly sharper vocals. Pattering percussion peppers the melody as the vocal harmonies dance with wobbling samples. There’s a quirkiness to this song that just feels infectious. ‘New Age’ is like this too, with clicking percussion bouncing perfectly alongside popping samples. Although ‘New Age’ has a more minimalist melody compared to other tracks on the album, it’s still compelling and its crisp accents add to the song’s welcoming presence.
‘Call On Me’ is very playful, with sparkling samples and twinkling tones injecting the melody with energy. The beat bounces above soft tones and samples of chirping birds give the track an overall sweetness. ‘Call On Me’ is really fun, as is ‘A Force Majeure’, the album’s lead single. Warped samples swirl beside bobbing synths, before a dazzling kaleidoscope of sound pulls you into a colourful new mind-space.
All of this definitely makes ‘A Force Majeure’ an album you can escape into and for those looking for just a moment to dance, ‘Fire Apartment’ will be just what you need. Angie Hudson’s vocals lead the charge with disco guitars injecting soft atmospherics with a bit of colour. Pulsating synths elegantly blend with the beat, allowing you to sway along with effortless ease.
Although there’s a darkness to ‘A Force Majeure’, contrasting elements that bring a lot of light make for a really balanced album. This is a collection of songs that don’t just sound incredible, they also allow us to dive head-first into a more ethereal headspace, where we can escape from where we are globally into a more sublime world.
Tora have made an incredible album and it’s one you should definitely allow yourself to get lost in.